In the absence of males, female Laysan Albatrosses team up to raise their young in Oahu, Hawaii
On the island of Oahu in Hawaii, a shortage of males has resulted in female Laysan Albatrosses teaming up to raise their young together. This strategy, called reciprocity, is the main reason why the once dwindling bird has been successful in populating the islands again.
At present, at least 31 per cent of the nests are built by female-female pairs. In these same sex pairs, at least one offspring is genetically related to each female indicating that both had reproduced. Unrelated same sex pairs participating in co-operative breeding are rare and the result of a dangerously skewed sex ratio. Though the birds have found a temporary solution, there is need for urgent action to ensure that the sex ratios are balanced and healthy.