Vote on Name for Condor Chick

Condor Keeper Ron Webb checks on the little chick via Condor Cam.

Our California condor chick, living at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, is doing great! (See previous post, Condors: Big Day Approaching.) It always amazes us to see just how quickly these chicks grow up. The time has come to give Sisquoc and Shatash’s chick an official name. We received so many amazing name suggestions, that we had a hard time paring the list down to three. Many of the 93 names we received were so great that they had already been used on condors before! After eliminating those, we spent a long time researching the remaining suggestions so that we could learn the Chumash definitions behind the names. Once we had our list narrowed down to the eligible choices, it was time for us to pick our favorites. After a lot of discussion, we decided on these three choices:

Maxa’lam – “To hold a festival, to throw a party.”As the person who suggested this name said, “Condors are a reason to celebrate!” (Submitted by Jen M. “@folkeye” via Twitter)

Saticoy – “It is sheltered from the wind.”
Our friend who suggested this name wrote, “It is a protected baby, sheltered from the dangers to its species by the captive breeding program. It also goes well with the parents’ names.” (Submitted by Emma Apple via Facebook)

Moyomin – “To be mischievous.”
Those of us who work with this endangered species know condors can be playful, and that’s what makes this bird a treat to work with! (Submitted by Zoelle Egner “@zoelle” via Twitter)

Congratulations to our three winners! Now the choice is yours. From today through the end of the day on Monday, April 2, you have a chance to vote on what our little condor will be named. Wish we could tell you if the chick is male or female, but we won’t know for some time, so pick the name you like best based on the meaning of the name. We think any one of these will be perfect for this chick. Vote here!

Thank you for your suggestions and for your continued support!

The Condor Team

23 Responses to Vote on Name for Condor Chick

  1. Hi there,
    I just noticed that the meaning under the two last options are swapped in the voting.



    Moderator’s note: Yikes! We’ll try to get that fixed. Please hold off voting until we do, and thank you, Sonja!

  2. Just curious what made you choose name submitters from Twitter over namers from Facebook.
    Multiple people submitted Moyomin on FB before it was mentioned on Twitter.

  3. I like Saticoy because it goes with the parents and it needs protection. I am excited that our Zoo has a new chick. I love birds and have several feeders in Borrego, Mammoth and San Diego. I have belonged to the zoo for 53 years….since our first son was born. All five of our children grew up going to the zoo several times a week

  4. Saticoy is a wonderful choice I think!!

  5. I was just thinking that Condor Lisa Rice would be cute for a girl condor’s name! Ha!

    • LOL. Love it.

      Are all the condor’s at the park named in Chumash? If not, how do you choose how they’re to be named?

      Condor Team responds: Safari Park animal care staff gives Chumash names to all of the condors that hatch here. We pick names that have a special meaning to the species, individual animal, or to us.

  6. Just wondering why the dads cheeks and neck are swollen

    Condor Team responds: The fat neck and cheeks seen on Dad are his air sacs inflating, sometimes just one cheek, sometimes both. That big, swollen neck can sometimes be triggered by some sort of state of excitement, and other times it seems it is for reasons only condors know. Other bird species also do this.

    • Thank you so much for your answer. Today, Sisquoc looks pretty much normal except for some flappy skin. It’s exciting being able to watch birds of this caliber doing what birds do in the wild, something we would never see. It makes you appreciate them and know they are caring, feeling birds that need to be here as much as we do. Again, thank you and keep up the wonderful work you do!!

      Moderator’s note: On behalf of the Condor Team, you are most welcome!

  7. Hi – the baby has a dark spot on his back and I see feathers lying about. Is he supposed to be losing feathers or is something wrong? Hope our baby is ok!

    Condor Team responds: The darker, secondary down is now starting to show underneath the white first down. You can also see it showing through in other areas as well, such as on the legs. Soon the little kid is going to be very ashy in color rather than white.

  8. I am 4 years old. I think the baby should be named Fluffy.

    Moderator’s note: The chick sure is fluffy right now, isn’t it? Thanks for watching, Merritt.

  9. I was just wondering if you know where this little guy/girl will end up when he/she grows up? Do you suppose that he/she might some day be seen flying around in Southern California/Northern Baja Mexico? Also, I liked the name: Moyomin.

    • The decision will be made based on where the chick is needed most to provide genetic diversity. One important question that must be answered: male or female? We won’t know for a little while longer. If it is decided that the chick should be part of the release program, then we have to see if it behaves like a wild condor should. Lots of questions need to be answered before the chick’s future is decided. Stay tuned. We will share more as we know.

  10. We continue to check on “our chick” periodically throughout the day. Usually Mom or Dad are blocking our view most of the time, but today, every time we checked in the chick was alone. We know that the parents will leave it longer as it gets older, but there was such a sudden change today. What are Mom and Dad up to? And is baby OK alone for this long???

    Moderator’s note: This is typical behavior for condors. And remember, the chick is not really alone, as keepers constantly monitor it via the Condor Cam. Did your class vote for a name?

  11. What is the baby eating at this point in its life?

    Moderator’s note: The parents feed the chick regurgitated meat from rabbits, rats, beef spleens (melts), trout, or a ground meat product made for zoo carnivores.

  12. Since we can only cast one vote, “my” vote is the “winner” from the class…. I encouraged them to get on at home and vote themselves so that each of their votes would count. Their energy remains high following the progress of the chick. We begin our spring break this weekend, and many of them will continue to watch from home. It has really been a great teaching and learning opportunity. A sincere thank you for making this available for us!

    Moderator’s note: You all are most welcome!

  13. Moderator: does the chic sleep alone at night. He seems to me along for very long periods of time durning the day.

    • Condors will roost for the evening, so the chick is spending time with at least one of its parents in the evening. The parents will spend just the right amount of time with the chick, even if to us it seems like it spends too much time alone.

  14. Moderator: How do you tell if it’s a male or female.

    Moderator’s note: We hope to have a new blog soon from our Condor Team that may answer these excellent questions.

    • We won’t know if the chick is a male or female until we get a small blood sample on its first veterinary check up. Physically, males and females look the same.

  15. the Baby is sooooooo cute folded up while trying to sleep but he/she keeps almost falling over because he/she stretches his/her neck to her back and then is unsteady. Very cute

  16. Thank you so much for offering this wonderful opportunity to see these amazing birds live on the webcam!

    I have a couple of questions: earlier this evening I noticed the baby in the far left corner of the nest and his father on the far right. I wondered why they were so far apart and whether this is part of the growing-up process for the baby. Also I think I’ve seen the parents eating the baby’s fluffy white feathers on the floor. Is this to help keep the nest clean and does it provide nutrition for them?

    Thank you for all you do for California Condors.

  17. Does the chick have mites? I have seen a black dot on its head on two occasions. The chick seemed to be bothered by it and shook its head. Are all those very dark spots on its skin beginning feathers or are some mites?

    Moderator’s note: The black dot could be a fly attracted by leftover food stuffs. Never fear: condors have excellent immune systems and are only mildly annoyed by the flies!

  18. Thank you to the camera operator today! With Sisquoc and Shatash out of the nest so much of the time it’s been wonderful to have baby’s moves followed as he/she explores the environment.