|A Tasmanian Shy Albatross named Aphrodite and ‘owned’ by Jerry Hall has won an epic 6000-mile race across the Indian Ocean this week. The Ladbrokes Big Bird Race began at the end of March, electronically tracking the birds as they made their extraordinary migratory journey from Australia to the Cape of Good Hope in South Africa.|
Punters were encouraged to have a ‘flutter’ on their favourite bird and were able to keep track of progress via the Ladbrokes website. Each albatross was sponsored by a celebrity, ranging from Queen’s Brian May to Queen Noor of Jordan.
The event was organised to highlight the plight of the majestic and endangered seabird, thousands of which each year, fall victim to longline fishing trawlers. The trawlers tow baited hooks, which ensnare the birds, dragging them for miles underwater. Of the eighteen fledglings that started out, only two, apart from Aphrodite, are still emitting signals.
The project has also been an invaluable opportunity to closely study the migrating habits of the birds. All money made by Ladbrokes from the race will go to research charities.