Monday 6 July 2009

Auks on the march

Flying high - an Arctic Tern chick on the wing for the first time

I want to fly- still some time to go for this young Arctic Tern chick

On the move - Guillemot with chick
Monday 6th July comments
As the month of July develops, we’ll see a big change on the islands as chicks start fledging and the cliffs and islands will slowly and surely become empty of breeding birds. However we’ve still got a long way to go before we reach that point. Its business as usual for the team, following another hectic week with all the media attention we received and the glorious weather which resulted in yet more visitors. The summer has been good so far, as we’ve escaped the worst of it and the end result could be amazing – we’re heading for a good year, fingers crossed.

Breeding birds: The auks march on as Puffin chicks are leaving every evening (we’re discovering handfuls every evening in the buildings and all successfully released!), huge gaps are now appearing on the cliff ledges as the number of Guillemots and Razorbills reduce as they head off with their youngsters into the depths of North Sea.

- stop press – just had an adult Puffin fly into my office whilst I’m writing this – OUCH blood now pouring from my finger as it bit me, upon release – thanks for that!

As for other breeding birds, its flying time!! Small numbers of young Arctic Terns are now flying with many more to follow, Sandwich Terns – over 50 chicks have fledged (so far) and chicks have hatched on the satellite colony on Brownsman, Kittiwake chicks continue to grow in size and strength – not long now before we’ll have our first fledger and fledged Shag chick numbers are increasing by the day.

So far its been an amazing season and if we can get away with another few weeks of good weather, we’ll be reporting an excellent season. Fingers crossed.

Butterflies: A noticeable increase of Painted Ladies and Red Admirals, whilst a Ringlet seen near the lighthouse is a rare visitor to these shores

: Our second Hummingbird Hawkmoth of the year graced Inner Farne for two days whilst the trap is producing good numbers of Bright-line Brown-eyes and

1 comment:

Jan said...

Ouch, that's what you get for saving puffins! Hope there are still a few in the Treshnish isles when we head there next week.