The choughlets are here!

I have been delayed posting this news for reasons to follow but what I want to start with is that we are pleased to let you know that five wild chough pairs have successfully fledged thirteen chicks to add to Cornwall's chough population.   These are pairs from the Lizard to St Ives:

To that reason that has delayed us in writing the news of fledging....

...We are still waiting for one nest!  However, it is an unvisited nest site where the male disappeared at some point during the breeding season but the female is coming and going to the nest as if she is feeding chicks.  We have learnt that choughs will still go through the motion of each breeding stage and have no chicks to show for it.  We are hoping this female surprises us but we are still waiting and watching...

When we know for sure about this nest, we will post again the full breeding season ups and downs in more details.

Thanks to (in order) Dave Flumm, Paul Mason, Geoff Rogers and Sarah Measham for the above photos.

UPDATE:  Well...a few hours later a young choughlet said hello to the outside world. She did it! Some point in the middle of May after she had finished incubating, she lost her partner and gained a new one - maybe in a week!  A one year old male has done his best to bond with her and is now a step dad!

Total is now at 14 choughlets.

Thanks to Geoff Rogers for the above photo.

PLEASE:  If you see a young chough, give them space.  They are at a very vulnerable stage where they are learning about dangers and how to fly and feed.

Coastal Birds of Cornwall

Check out this fantastic picture of a chough and a kestrel taken recently in the far west of Kernow.  The photo was taken by James Sellen on his recently holiday to the area.

Photo by James Sellen

Volunteer for Cornwall’s wild choughs

We are looking for local people to join our team to protect and monitor the wild chough population in West Cornwall.

About three quarters of the population of Cornwall’s choughs are in the St Just area and reside along the coast between Pendeen and Land's End.  Hopefully as the numbers go up, you are getting a chance to see them?

However, the numbers are still very low.  Monitoring the choughs helps us keep an eye on the population and what they are up to so we know how to best adapt our conservation efforts for them.

Choughs have the highest level of protection as a Schedule 1 species under the Wildlife and Countryside Act, but due to their rarity they are still at risk from disturbance and egg thieves.  A dedicated team of volunteers helps to protect nest sites from these risks.

In partnership with National Trust on the Lizard, we are also looking for volunteers to help protect and monitor the pair of choughs that live on Southerly Point.

Interested?
You don't need to be a birdwatcher, you just need to be interested in wildlife and love the outdoors!
Taking part involves spending a regular amount of time each week through the spring and early summer.
Most people volunteer on their own but you can also volunteer with your partner or a friend.
Ultimately, you are part of a team and it is a great opportunity to meet others with similar interests during the spring.
You also get to learn about and see the choughs and other wildlife on Cornwall’s coast.

You must be over 18 years old.   Have a good level of physical fitness and be comfortable outside in most weathers. Be passionate about wildlife and want to help protect the choughs.
Available for a few hours once a week or fortnight or more if you have plenty of time on your hands!  We are looking for people who are available April to June.

If you are interested in helping the National Trust on the Lizard, visit their blog site for more info: http://www.lizardandpenrose.blogspot.co.uk/

If you are interested in helping the choughs in West Cornwall, or would like more information on the choughs in Cornwall, contact us on: cornichchoughs@rspb.org.uk.

You can also register your interest to volunteer via Do-it.org