Ascension : Conservation Weekly
Submitted by The Islander (Conservation Office) 18.02.2010 (Article Archived on 04.03.2010)
We would like to thank Len Coleman, the GIS specialist from St Helena for his help over the last three weeks. Len has been training staff on the use of GIS and AEIOU (Ascension Environmental Information Operations Utility).
Ascension Island Conservation Department
We would like to thank Len Coleman, the GIS specialist from St Helena for his help over the last three weeks. Len has been training staff on the use of GIS and AEIOU (Ascension Environmental Information Operations Utility). Various AIG departments, Cable and Wireless, the School and the Police have benefited from Lenís visit. This training will allow us to make better use of the AEIOU. Entering new datasets to keep the system up to date is essential for its intended purpose of environmental monitoring, management and planning.
Len Coleman and the Conservation staff
Seabird restoration project
The Ascension Island Conservation Department, in partnership with the RSPB began a Seabird Restoration Project in 2001. Feral cats were eradicated from the Island, allowing the seabirds to return to nest on the mainland. The last known feral cat was found in February 2004, since then a feral cat monitoring programme has been taking place. Since the eradication of the feral cats we have noticed that the nesting success rate has improved and we are monitoring more birds in an increasing number of locations.
At the moment out at Letterbox there are many nesting masked boobies, covering Mandela Ridge, Razors edge and towards South East Bay. There are some brown boobies and red billed tropics to be found nesting in the cliffs along the coastal walk from Letterbox towards South East Bay. The seabird restoration team, Raymond Benjamin and Nathan Fowler are visiting this area every week to record nest locations and monitor their success rate. They have also set up ten nest cameras at different locations around Letterbox, which has given us some good observational viewing of the birdís behaviour and also shows images of rat activity in the area.
Photo: Mark Bolton, RSPB
The sooty terns from Mars Bay and Waterside have left the area for now. At North West point the yellow billed tropics are doing well, with a few chicks nearing the fledging stage.
Raymond Benjamin and Nathan Fowler.
Volunteers welcome. Please contact Olivia Renshaw or Natasha Williams. Ascension Island Conservation Department. Georgetown. Tel: 6359. Email: email@example.com