I recently joined the site as a volunteer warden and visit there twice a week. The site comprises two islands within a deep water lagoon on the site of the old oysterbeds. It is managed by the Wildlife Trust and was created to provide a besting place for Little Tern. This year they arrived after the Common Tern and found that the islands were fully occupied by nesting Common Tern and Black-headed gulls. They have been forced to nest elswhere in the harbour.
I thought I would share some of the images I took during my visit yesterday.
The first brood of Common Tern and Black-headed gulls have now fledged and dispersed. A second brood of Common Tern have recently hatched and the parents are spending a lot of time fishing for food for them. The weather yesterday was not good with a strongish wind and heavy showers. The water was very choppy which made fishing difficult. The majority of the food being brought back for the chicks was crabs.
This adult landed to feed the chick until it realised it was not its own. As it took off, the disappointment of the chick could not be clearer.
The chick are pretty well camouflaged and hide in he vegetation until their parents appear and then rush to grab what food is on offer.
Out on the adjacent mud flats I found this Curlew. I have never seen such a long bill.
It is not only the Gulls and Tern that use the islands but a pair of Oystercatcher also nested here. They and their young have now left though so I cannot show you pictures of them.
This Egret has been seen on the South Island on the last three visits. It's only using the island as a safe roost though.
C&C always welcome.