Staff at the Washington Wetlands Centre are trying to encourage their Chilean flamingoes to lay eggs.
With just two weeks of the six-week mating season left, staff are slightly concerned that none have been laid so far.
The centre is one of just 30 sites in the world where flamingoes are specially bred.
The birds have been part of the Wildfowl and Wetland Trust’s conservation breeding programme for more than 45 years.
They can live for up to sixty years and so they have no urgency to mate each year.
They are also fussy breeders and can be deterred from laying eggs by wet weather.
In addition, they will only make egg nests if they like the type of soil that is available.
Staff at the Washington Wetlands Centre are doing all they can to encourage the birds to reproduce, such as observing the type of soil they seem to like for their nests, and providing it.
When flamingoes mate successfully, a female will produce just a single egg that season, which it will lay on a volcano-shaped nest.
If a Washington Wetlands Centre warden spots an egg, they will replace it with a dummy and place the real one in an incubator to keep it safe.
Just before the egg hatches, it is returned to its mother.
The resulting chick could eventually live for to 50 years.
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