» Seabirds

Seabirds eat plastic because it smells like food, say scientists

The Guardian reports, 9th November 2016: Algae on drifting plastic waste gives off a sulphur compound which smells similar to the krill many marine birds feed on, researchers have discovered. The findings could explain why certain birds — including albatrosses and shearwaters — which rely on their sense of smell for hunting, are particularly vulnerable […]

Sea bird populations on St Kilda are being profoundly affected by climate change

The Guardian reports, 4th December 2015: The survival of seabirds including puffins and kittiwakes on St Kilda — the island archipelago home to one of the world’s most important seabird populations — is being threatened by climate change, striking new evidence shows. Naturalists have discovered that the kittiwake, a small migratory gull with ink-black wing […]

Seabird populations worldwide have declined 70% over the last 60 years, says study

PLoSONE reports, 9th June 2015: Seabird population changes are good indicators of long-term and large-scale change in marine ecosystems, and important because of their many impacts on marine ecosystems. We [see citation below] assessed the population trend of the world’s monitored seabirds (1950–2010) by compiling a global database of seabird population size records and applying […]

Study finds 9 out of 10 seabirds have plastic in their gut

The Guardian reports, 1st September 2015: As many as nine out of 10 of the world’s seabirds are likely to have pieces of plastic in their guts, a new study estimates. An Australian team of scientists who have studied birds and marine debris found that far more seabirds were affected than the previous estimate of […]

National Trust concern for Norfolk and Suffolk bird habitat erosion

The heavy rainfall, the loss of foreshore due to the 5th December 2013 tidal surges that resulted in flooding was followed by the exceptionally high tides in mid June 2014, when the further loss produced an increasing further grave threat to Norfolk and Suffolk’s coastal wildlife sights. At the Blakeney Point, Great Yarmouth and Minsmere Reserves, Britain’s greatest Little Tern colonies, the surge altered […]

Change in Arctic bird breeding patterns confirms that the Arctic is warming

The Guardian reports, 8th July 2014: “Arctic migrants are nesting up to seven days earlier as the world warms. The sandpiper makes a beeline for the Alaskan shores, to join the phalarope on the beach and the songbirds in the woods — Conservation scientists Joe Liebezeit and Steve Zack – both then of the Wildlife […]

Global Oceans Commission launches petition in support of its Report

A Global Ocean Commission press release, 3rd July 2014, states: “A week ago the Global Ocean Commission released its report and proposals for restoring ocean health. If you have not seen the report you can see it here. “As part of the Global Ocean Commission’s commitment to breathe life into its proposals it has started […]

Beach losses threat to Norfolk’s little tern colonies

The Norfolk Coast has long been a return haven every April for nesting Little Terns, with colonies at Great Yarmouth North Dunes and Winterton on the East Coast and at Blakeney National Nature Reserve on the North. These tiny terns are one of the UK’s rarest seabirds, so are protected by RSPB Wardens from disturbance […]

Scottish government criticised for failure in its “climate and wildlife policies”

The Guardian reports, 28th October 2013: “Alex Salmond’s government is failing to live up to many of its ambitious promises on climate change and protecting Scotland’s natural heritage, a study has concluded. The report by the Institute for European Environmental Policy (IEEP) said that the Scottish government’s efforts to set new standards on climate and […]

Serious decline in Scotland’s seabird colonies urgently warrants “marine reserves”, says RSPB

RSPB Scotland is warning that some of Scotland’s globally important seabird colonies could become extinct in parts of the country if the Scottish Government does not act quickly to protect them. Species like common guillemots, razorbills and puffins are struggling to cope with increasing challenges including a lack of food and the effects of climate […]

Seabirds washed up in serious distress on south-west coast

Hundreds of seabirds – some dead – have been washed up on England’s south west coast, covered in a waxy substance. The RSPCA said it had rescued more than 100 birds, which had been taken to the West Hatch Animal Centre in Taunton. Earlier reports suggested the white substance was palm oil, but scientists were […]