22 Rock Ptarmigans Returned to Wild in Japan

Society Environment

Tokyo, Aug. 11 (Jiji Press)--Twenty-two Japanese rock ptarmigans have been returned to the wild in Japan, the Environment Ministry said Wednesday.

The birds were bred at Nasu Animal Kingdom in Tochigi Prefecture in eastern Japan or Nagano Chausuyama Zoo in the central Japan city of Nagano.

It was the first time for Japanese rock ptarmigans bred at a zoo to be released into the wild in Japan, according to the ministry. The Japanese rock ptarmigan is on the red list and designated as a special natural monument by the Japanese government.

The 22 Japanese rock ptarmigans were transported to the Komagatake peak in the Chuo Alps mountain range in Nagano Prefecture by helicopter on Wednesday.

They will be kept in cages for about a week and then released in stages. “We hope that the rock ptarmigan population will be maintained through breeding in an environment free from human intervention,” a ministry official in charge said.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press