Sunday, 12 May 2013

More nest failures, what chance the newborns?

As per usual when on annual leave, the weather has been crap again today. Within 30 minutes of getting up it turned from dry to drizzle. I chanced it at Stithians, it was still dry there but after ten minutes it came in wet - very wet.

I decided to move over to the coast and thankfully Hells Mouth was dry. Another Cormorant nest has failed, on Friday the nest had two dead young and one surviving whose wing feathers were "in pin". There was no adult present which is odd, it is very rare to see a Cormorant nest unattended. Today it was three dead chicks with no sign of the adult. It did return however, proceeded to brood the young before standing up. Another nest that could be declared a failure later on in the week has been subject to predation. On Friday, once again a rare move, a Cormorant got off it's egg, covered it over and left. Within 15 minutes a pair of Herring Gull nesting only six feet away started to rob the nest of material eventually finding the egg. After they had picked it up four or five times between them and looking at each other they left it. The Cormorant returned, pulled around some nest material before settling on the egg again. Today the bird was standing on an empty nest so it'll be interesting to see whether it lays any more or game over. From the original 22 eggs laid in March only 6 young now survive.

The Shag are just starting to hatch now, with the current temperatures and rain I think mortality could be high for these as well.

By mid morning it was home for the rest of the day as rain stopped play. Thankfully it cleared up after tea and I was able to get out for an hour around two old tin mine engine houses at the top of the village. I did find a Chaffinch nest in a gorse bush after tapping the female off, no eggs but hopefully something on Thursday as I run out of time. Four days left to hammer nesting before I am weekends only again. 

No comments:

Post a Comment