Although the majority of the first half of our field season has been nothing but blue skies and sunshine, this past week has given us enough rain for the whole summer. However, the terns and guillemots don’t seem to mind much. They’re growing more and more everyday; the terns chicks from nest # 2 already have most of their primaries in! While the guillemots may not be as further developed as the terns are, we’re finding at least a dozen new chicks every time we check the burrows; we almost have as many chicks as we have burrows (67 chicks and 73 burrows!).
Now that we have all of our tern chicks hatched (8 in all), we have started our provisioning surveys. These are conducted 4 times a week for 3-hour stints at a time, recording the species of fish that the adults bring in to feed the chicks. The most common fish that are being brought in are sandlance and herring.
We’re also beginning to see a wide variety of early migrants on the island, from shorebirds to raptors. Notable sightings include: spotted sandpiper, killdeer, semipalmated sandpiper and northern harrier. We’re adding more species to our running list everyday, with the northern harrier making it 43. The upcoming week is our break off the island, and we plan to do a lot of hiking and exploring around the area, taking advantage of the sun coming our way. We’re excited to see how much our chicks grow when we get back!
~Nate and Dawson, EBI 2016