Thursday, June 27, 2013

Protecting Cockenoe Island

Today our staff helped the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to fence off Cockenoe Island in Westport. This critical waterbird nesting habitat currently supports three pairs of American Oystercatchers with at least four chicks. During our visit a gull attacked one of those chicks that escaped by entering the water and swimming away! It was able to make its way back to shore just in time as it grew tired quickly and began to struggle.

Here's a shot of a couple of our crew hard at work.

There were also 75 to 90 Common Terns in the area with about 50 chicks on Cockenoe among the many nests. Take a look at all of them in the air!

And here you can see those chicks.

Hopefully this work by USFWS and the AAfCW work will help protect the island and the nesting colony throughout the busy summer as boats enter the water and activity rises in Long Island Sound, especially around the 4th of July. Additional signage will be going up to help educate people that pass by about the birds nesting there.

Audubon Alliance for Coastal Waterbirds, Audubon Connecticut and the Connecticut Audubon Society partnering to improve conditions for coastal waterbirds in Connecticut.

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