Monday, 18 May 2015

Spring Break

Bird life in Dublin Bay certainly has changed to reflect the coming and passing of spring. As we discussed in our two preceding blogs many of our familiar species have headed north in an effort to mate and hopefully successfully breed at their respective breeding grounds. For the most part it's business as usual for the Dublin Bay Birds Project Team. We continue our monthly suite of waterbird counts and have seen increasing numbers of terns return to the bay in anticipation of their breeding season ahead. A new tern-breeding raft has been installed north of the Great South Wall in the past month and we will keep a close eye on the "take up" of breeding pairs on the raft as the season develops.

Last week our own Niall Tierney took the opportunity to visit Iceland for a short holiday. Showing true commitment to the project he has spent much of his time in Iceland combing the coastlines' fjords and bays for project-ringed birds. Lo and behold he has connected with one of our birds previously caught and ringed at Sandymount Strand as part of our project work last February.

Oystercatcher "FL" foraging last week on the Icelandic coast - Niall Tierney

Word has reached us of two sightings the Oystercatcher "FL"(the birds individual code) on the 6th and 16th of May at Hvalfjordur which is located on the south western side of the Icelandic coast. Niall reports "FL" has been with a non-breeding flock of c140 oystercatchers frequenting the area. It must have been a great experience for Niall to have caught and possibly even personally ringed FL in Dublin last February (HEREs the blog from that catch day) and then see it in Iceland where it has returned in an attempt to find a mate and raise young this spring. We look forward to hear more details from Niall in the coming days. 

Oystercatcher "FL" re-sighted at Hvalfjordur Iceland

Standby for more re-sighting stories as the season develops and for news on the breeding tern season ahead.

BirdWatch Ireland is currently running a campaign (along side other EU Birdlife partners) in an effort to stop the European Commission from reopening and making negative changes to two EU Directives. The strength of the EU Habitats Directive and The Birds Directive is under threat. These laws are incorporated into Irish law and are the vital in protecting the habitats and species of Dublin Bay and throughout the rest of Ireland and Europe. Please follow the link HERE and take a few minutes to help this campaign.