Nest­ing birds to take their tern

Canning Times - - NEWS -

THE com­mu­nity has been urged to avoid the end of the Point Wal­ter spit this spring and sum­mer as fairy terns de­scend to nest on the shore­line.

The De­part­ment of Bio­di­ver­sity, Con­ser­va­tion and At­trac­tions (DBCA) Parks and Wildlife Service are en­cour­ag­ing peo­ple to stay be­hind tem­po­rary fenc­ing to al­low the threat­ened species the best chance of nest­ing suc­cess.

DBCA Parks and Wildlife Service Swan Re­gion plan­ning officer Ben Ansell said about 70 pairs of fairy terns were ex­pected to nest on the Point Wa­ter spit shore­line this sea­son.

“These small birds nest be­tween Oc­to­ber and Jan­uary, and like many shore­birds, will nest above the high-tide mark on sandy beaches, where they lay one or two speck­led eggs in a shal­low scrape in the sand,” he said.

“The eggs and chicks are very vul­ner­a­ble to in­tro­duced preda­tors, habi­tat loss, ex­treme weather events and dis­tur­bance, so we are work­ing to re­duce some of these threats and max­imise breed­ing suc­cess and sur­vival.

“Chick shel­ters will be in­stalled along the nest­ing area of the spit to help pro­tect the hatch­lings from ex­po­sure and pre­da­tion, and we are also pro­vid­ing in­wa­ter sig­nage to pre­vent wa­ter­craft ap­proach­ing the nest­ing area.”

Other birds, in­clud­ing pied oys­ter­catch­ers and red-capped plovers, also nest in the area dur­ing this pe­riod and will ben­e­fit from re­duced dis­tur­bance.

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