Cape Breton's Magazine

> Issue 26 > Page 49 - Regarding the Birds of the Bird Islands

Page 49 - Regarding the Birds of the Bird Islands

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1980/8/1 (220 reads)

.-.m-m ' • 'j'''Wfl''''V back of the caves. Or it could be they are just arriving there. I would think they're starting the breeding. (Listen to what Bayley says next: "There are certainly 1000 Puffins nesting here at present and it is said that in former years, say 60 years ago, they nested here in veritable crowds, associated with Razor? bills, Murres, and Guillemots. That such a colony of breeding Puffins has persisted in Nova Scotia is unrecorded in the ornith? ological literature.") Dan: Well, you can't refute it. But physically • as far as I know. Puffins always nest in burrows, not out in the open. If that's the case, they couldn't have nested on those islands in the thousands--unless they dug their own burrows along the top in the turf. Dave: The Gulls have started to move into some of the larger burrows • that could ex? plain the difference--you could almost double the numbers from last year, if eve? ry burrow was used. But you couldn't go into the thousands. Dan: And does he mean a thousand pairs or a thousand birds • half that number? Dave: And how much of Ciboux has washed away since then? Dan: So with the natural burrows, it would not have been possible--but if the Puffins were digging their own, as they may very well have been, along the turf at the top--then certainly*it's possible. Particularly, as Dave says, if the Gulls weren't there at that time. It will be interesting to see what he says about the numbers of Gulls there. Dave: Because you can see the Gulls in the larger burrows. They were on top for quite awhile. Last year I didn't notice the Gulls in those burrows like I did this year. Last year was my first year. So it would really take another year or so to really see. (So you have a sense Gulls are taking over Puffin burrows?) Not necessar? ily Puffin burrows • but they are in the larger burrows in some areas of the island. (And if it was a battle?) Dan: Oh, I would think the Gulls would win. BLACK GUILLEMOT. Dave: They nest on a lot of islands. Where you have a rocky sort of coast, you'll see them there. "Sea Pi? geons," a lot of your readers will likely know them as. (Bayley says: "This species nests commonly in the great jumble of rock slabs at the base of the cliff, more par? ticularly towards the western half of each island, and on the high table rock between the two main islands,") Dave: That's def? initely their habitat, Dan: He's being very exact there. Dave: You couldn't do it better--the type of rock. Dan: And as a matter of fact, it is the western side of both islands where those rock slabs occur. Bird Island Tours CAMPING and CABINS A Z V/2 hour cruise fro • MOUNTAIN VIEW BY THE SEA 4 miles off Trans-Canada Highway at Big Bras d'Or (902)674-2384 A differcint kind of luxury car from EUROCAR SERVICE LTD. IfestiiiottBT* opposite Dobson Yacht Cli • W We Buy & We Sell and We're as Near as your Telephone Sid's Used Furniture 436 Charlotte St, Sydney . 564-6123 AIR CANADA Sy SERVING CANADA COAST TO COAST THE UNrrCOSTATK • UNITED KINGOOM • EUROK • CAftfHBEAN For. n'vfiiMCioii • • • ? yeat' JwitMl Jiguu er AIR CANADA'''SSJjr** (49)
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