Since we started our internship back in March, we have been closely monitoring Black Oystercatchers. Depending on the tides, Hugo and I would go out to the rocky intertidal in search of the bird. In the beginning, we would try to identify couples, or single individuals. Black Oystercatchers mate for life so its easy to identify the couples because they tend to stay together. Within our three sites along the coast, we have four couples and one bachelor. We have been seeing some mating activity lately from one of our couples at our site. Over the weekend I started to climb up to the area where one black oystercatcher kept sitting, and I saw my first nest! I was pretty excited to see three eggs in the nest, and I took as many pictures as I could. Black oystercatchers nest along the rocks, putting small pieces of shells at the bottom of the nest.
I was excited to see the eggs, but worried about the nest location. In the past, I have seen lots of people walking along the area of the nest. It was also Memorial Day Weekend, so the beaches were packed. So each day, I was going out at low tide to check on the eggs, making sure that no one had stepped on any, and asking people to not get too close. Because of the holiday, I havent been able to create a “barrier”, for people to know that the eggs are there. Now that we know the birds are laying eggs, I will work on posting up some kind of information pamphlets to let people know to watch out.