Monday 31 May 2021

Looe island seal survey and bird monitoring. 27th May 2021.

Nesting Oystercatcher

It was a great privilege to be back on Looe island again this month for our regular Cornwall Seal Group Research Trust survey in conjunction with the Looe Marine Conservation Group and the Cornwall Wildlife Trust.

After a bit of a "jigging around" of days we alighted on the new jetty at about 8:45 to be met by Jon & Claire the wardens and several members of the CWT Marine group who had spent the night on the island.

It was also a pleasure to meet up with the 4 CWT volunteers who are going to be resident there for 2 months of the summer. What a fantastic opportunity for them and I'm sure they'll be worth their weight in gold helping to get lots of the jobs completed.

We had a maximum of 6 seals, with 4 hauled out and 2 in the water during our low tide count, there was quite a bit of disturbance from boats and kayakers with one group causing me to get vocal as they came in under the main cormorant colony and caused a lot of stress to the birds.

I won't post the images of those causing the disturbance as there were young people involved and it was the fault of their leaders and instructors so they will be contacted separately.

Apologies for the poor quality of some of the images as I suffered from a rare phenomenon in Cornwall "heat haze"! This causes degradation of the images on pictures taken from a distance and it really was a problem with the long distance seal photos.


Grey seal hauled out.

Grey seal in the water

Here are a few more bird images from the day.

Cormorant colony

Cormorant colony

Cormorant portrait

Cormorants displaying

Cormorants displaying

Cormorants displaying


Oystercatcher nest with 3 eggs

Another Oystercatcher nest with 3 eggs

Oystercatcher pair.

Great black backed Gull


Bar-tailed Godwit



Jasmina said...

Thanks for the blog and pictures - lovely images as always - missed not being able to go this month- cross the kayakers are often so disrespectful of the wildlife 😞

Derek Spooner said...

Great pictures as always Adrian and I was sorry not to be able to come on this survey. However I managed a visit the next day, 28th May, and caught up with the progress of Oystercatchers and Shags in particular. Hope to see you soon, maybe with DC at Garrow Tor ?
Sad to hear about the disturbance - young Cormorants are easily stampeded.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing this Adrian - as ever, some fantastic photos.
Yes, wildlife disturbance is a problem and we are bracing ourselves as this summer we expect to see more people than ever around our shores. I think the main thing is lack of awareness and hopefully Cornwall Wildlife Trust and other groups can help spread the word : Give Wildlife Space. If anyone needs it, there's lots of information about how to be more respectful and considerate towards our marine and coastal wildlife and wild spaces here:
Look forward to seeing you here again soon!
Claire (Warden's Assistant, Looe Island Nature Reserve)

Anonymous said...

Great photos