Hello birders (and those just starting) xD
This week was really jam-packed, from finishing up filming with Jayme to kayaking and getting to some great disturbance surveys for Black oystercatchers! (Which is my concentration for this blog!) 🙂
A week or so ago I went out with Rick who is in charge of the BLOY (acronym for Black Oystercatchers) monitoring program, and he gave me a short tour/preview of the BLOYS territory and potential nesting sites. He also explained how there is a 30% reproductive success rate, and how foot traffic and human disturbance has A LOT to do with it.
There are 14 sites along the coast at Pacific Grove, and I was mostly monitoring 9,14 and 7, since 14 and 7 were right next to each other. However, it seems that 14 has changed their nesting site, which makes it much harder to monitor, except through the library. BUT- since it is an area that might need extra monitoring (video cam), I have shifted to pair 6, 9, and 7 mostly, while concentrating on other pairs for disturbance surveys. There is an interloper (intruder, basically), trying to find space in already claimed territory, and most BLOYS are extremely defensive, especially since they started laying eggs!
(I know because pair#5 is incubating! 2 eggs- I saw them on Sunday!! TJ!!)
Anyway that is the update and you might be surprised, but these guys see a whole lot of drama!!! From people being just a few meters from their nest, to battling drones and interlopers in mid-air; its not wonder they haven’t been very successful in breeding. And its not just observing them; its also educating the public.
We are not just people looking at birds and other pretty things through the scopes; we are collecting data, we are monitoring and analyzing, and seeing how we can better manage and adapt already existing measures to ensure higher survivability of BLOYS and their chicks.
And we are just starting 🙂
(ps- seems the first BLOY chick has been born of the season!!) Yay baby BLOYS!!!