South Coast NSW, Nesting Shorebird Update No. 3

Subject: South Coast NSW, Nesting Shorebird Update No. 3
From: Mike Jarman <>
Date: Fri, 21 Dec 2007 16:58:02 +1100
Hi all

Here is the latest of Jodies reports on the south coast.  She has been working 
tirelessly preparing for the christmas rush to our beautiful beaches. Make sure 
that if you are visiting the south coast, you visit one of the shorebird sites. 
 The more friendly people to visit the sites, the better.  It definately puts 
off the reckless dog owners when they are being watched with binoculars.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Years Birding


Hi there everyone

Well the Little Terns are going great at the moment. At Lake Conjola we have a 
total of 29 nests with only 3 lost (1 to inundation and 2 abandoned). From the 
26 nests left, 35 chicks have hatched and are now hiding amongst the vegetation 
on the sandspit and in the dunes. Hopefully a lot of them are inside our 
protective electric fence. With 28 eggs left to hatch and Andrew the RLPB 
Ranger getting rid of the roaming fox two nights ago, everything looks great 
for this colony.

Further north at Lake Wollumboola we have had a total of 51 nests! 8 nests have 
been lost. 6 were abandoned at this exposed and sometimes very windy site while 
the other two were lost to a fox. This fox visited on 2 separate nights only 
taking one nest each time, both from inside protective nest cages and one was 
even inside the sturdy electric fence. A contract fox trapper has removed a fox 
but another is believed to be lurking around. Let's hope it doesn't come back 
as we have 97 eggs to hatch and 8 little chicks running around.

At the Windang 'Bird Island' we have had a total of ten nests. The first two 
nests were lost but since the erection of the fence and signs all the remaining 
8 nests have survived. We now have 11 chicks and another 12 eggs to hatch. 
Check out WIN news tonight at 6:30pm and the Illawarra Mercury Weekend Edition 
to see some cute photos and stories on the colony. It has been a great 
collaboration between NPWS, the Lake Illawarra Authority and Wollongong City 

Well as usual the poor little Hooded Plovers are not doing so well. Down at 
Pretty Beach and Bullpup Beach we had 3 chicks hatch out at each site, however, 
all but one has been lost to the many ravens in the area. I found the last 
chick surrounded by ravens and put him in a good little rock cave. Hopefully he 
will make it as he is getting bigger by the day. At Ulladulla the two cute 
little chicks have hatched out. This pair successfully fledged 5 out of 6 
chicks last year so I hope they will succeed with these two. At Narrawallee the 
remaining chick is as big as the parents and almost ready to fledge. The pair 
normally found at Conjola have two healthy chicks at Manyana. I have received 
reports that they are almost the size of the parents and are looking fit and 
well, running around the beach. The Berrara pair have finally nested again with 
two eggs inside the fenced shorebird protection area. however they didn't put 
them back inside the cage and it had to be moved two metres to protect this new 
nest. I also walked from Dolphin Point to Bawley Point (4 hours) in a last 
attempt to find a nest in here before the tourist season. However, no joy, I 
didn't even see a Hooded Plover at all. I think this pair is on holidays.

Most of the Pied Oystercatchers have fledged their chicks. With the Shoalhaven 
Heads chick and the two at Burrill Lake fledging last week, our tally so far 
for the South Coast is eight. The pair at Narrawallee are still sitting on two 
eggs that should hatch next week.

The most challenging time of year is coming up for the threatened shorebirds as 
we all flock to the beaches of the south coast. So let's hope that everyone 
respects the signs and gives the birds some space.

I hope you all have a Merry Christmas and I'll update you again in the new year 


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