Bird Islands in Dams

To: Peter Shute <>, Andrew Hobbs <>, BirdingAus <>, Judith Hoyle <>
Subject: Bird Islands in Dams
From: "" <>
Date: Sat, 15 Dec 2007 14:03:13 +0900
Dear all

Here's a bit more info on what the Poms like me usually call "bird rafts"  although I guess "bird pontoons" would be less ambiguous.

For an account of the success of the RSPB in using rafts for Divers (as we Poms call Loons) see for example:

There is a photo of some tern rafts at  where a chain of rafts (started in the 1970s I think) helps create a barrier between areas use for boating and conservation area, and also reduces wave action thus creating some muddy shallows. 

And the great British Trust for Conservation Volunteers has a whole section on raft designs (including floating rafts of reeds and a cute little one on a pole) in their waterways and wetlands handbook:

Michael Norris

On Fri Dec 14 3:23 , Judith Hoyle <>sent:

Hi Peter,
Sorry, I had not realised that the article I pasted in did not transmit with the pictures in it.  I have sent the link below.  You will see that the structure is not much more than a raft!  Still in this case it did the trick and it shows how small you can go and still make a difference!

> Subject: RE: [Birding-Aus] Bird Islands in Dams
> Date: Fri, 14 Dec 2007 09:50:54 +1100
> From:
> To: ; ; ;
> Where exactly on the site is the photo of the pontoon? I'm wondering if
> pontoons could be better than islands, as they could be constructed to
> make it difficult for a fox to climb up onto them. Although I guess
> that could make it hard for young birds too.
> Peter Shute
> wrote on Thursday, 13 December 2007
> 6:10 PM:
> > Hi Everyone,
> >
> > In response to the debate bird islands in dams, I have cut
> > and pasted the article below off the net from Alaska. Jean
> > Tam's work with Loons in Connors Lake in Anchorage shows how
> > successful a very simple approach can be in providing refuge
> > for nesting birds. I have visited this lake with Jean and
> > Scott and as you can see from the photos the pontoon is not
> > far from shore. I'm not sure what the fox population is in
> > Anchorage, but red foxes do inhabit the state and naturally
> > cats are common pets. As you will read though, raptors were
> > the big issue for the loons, which they fixed with a screen.

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