Returning Seabirds to Great Barrier
Seabirds have been decimated by rats on the island. Here, at Windy Hill, we are finding seabirds are here to breed again as we keep rats at really low numbers. Over the summer redbilled gulls, grey faced petrels, and black petrel bred in the Sanctuary. To find out more we engaged Chris Gaskin, seabird expert, to put up acoustic recorders out on the coast - these record for 6 hours in the early morning and evening . Six units have been in place since December and new sanctuary field worker Henry Cookson spends three afternoons a week analysing the call patterns on the Songbird software. Whe he comes aross a seabird call he cuts the esction out and we email it to Chris for identification. So far we have heard black petrel and fluttering shearwaters. The fluttering shearwaters are winter breeders so we are hoping to hear ore of these birds as they come in to nest.
Chris Gaskin out on the Windy Hill Coast putting up the acoustic recorders.