Methods for the conservation of maleo birds, Macrocephalon maleo on the island of Sulawesi, Indonesia

  • Published source details MacKinnon J. (1981) Methods for the conservation of maleo birds, Macrocephalon maleo on the island of Sulawesi, Indonesia. Biological Conservation, 20, 183-193.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Translocate megapodes

Action Link
Bird Conservation
  1. Translocate megapodes

    A replicated study on Sulawesi, Indonesia, in 1972-3 and 1978-9 (Mackinnon 1981) found that hatching rates for maleo Macrocephalon maleo eggs translocated from unprotected beaches to a protected nature reserve ranged from 41% (321 of 789 eggs translocated in 1972-3) to 78% (105 of 134 eggs translocated in 1978-9). Guards at the park reported larger numbers of maleo nesting after the second translocation, although this was not confirmed and it was not certain that any extra birds were the translocated individuals. In the second translocation, eggs were buried in the sand in the same position that they were found in (the top of the egg was marked with a cross before removal), whereas in the first experiment they were placed haphazardly in the sand. In addition, in the second translocation, once one chick from a clutch emerged, the others were dug out. It was found that those placed in the wrong orientation died, those buried too deep hatched but the chicks then died tunnelling to the surface. The highest success rates were with eggs buried approximately 25 cm deep (shallower than the 40-70 cm commonly seen in the wild).


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