Amazing Aride Island

I first stepped foot on Aride Island, Seychelles, in March 1972. With John Procter, then the Conservation Advisor to the Seychelles Government, we undertook a 3-day survey of the island, its vegetation and bird and reptile life. The island lived up to its name, being very dry even at the end of the “wet” season … More Amazing Aride Island

Feedback from Pathtrack: tracking technology moves on

On Friday 16 September Christine and I visited Pathtrack Ltd, the company that makes the GPS loggers (Nanofix GEO+) that we deploy on Sooty Terns (and that we also put on Brown Noddies with Camille Lebarbenchon, our friend based at Reunion Island). Following increased demand for their tracking equipment Pathtrack have relocated to a larger building in … More Feedback from Pathtrack: tracking technology moves on

A Noddy enigma

The colours and patterns of the eggs and chicks of ground-nesting terns are generally considered to have evolved to provide camouflage against the background of the nesting areas. This works to a certain extent: Sooty Tern eggs are difficult to see on a sandy substrate and dark brown downy chicks are barely visible among driftwood … More A Noddy enigma

Pirates of the air and sea, but bedfellows too

Frigatebirds, those aerial giants of tropical waters, once called man-o-war birds by seafarers, are renowned for their aerobatic prowess when chasing other birds, especially boobies, in order to persuade the latter to regurgitate their last meal, which the frigatebirds eagerly devour. However, on Aldabra and elsewhere, frigatebirds and boobies breed alongside each other and live … More Pirates of the air and sea, but bedfellows too

Camille Lebarbenchon arrives on Bird Island

Our friend Camille Lebarbenchon, from the University of Reunion Island, has now joined us on Bird Island for the fifth year in succession. He is undertaking ground-breaking research on pathogens carried by seabirds in the western Indian Ocean. On Bird Island this has involved mainly Sooty Terns, Brown Noddies and Lesser Noddies but he has … More Camille Lebarbenchon arrives on Bird Island