Hello friends and family
Sunday was glorious – sunny and still.
Hiltrun and I did the monitoring round and found all the chicks were well and growing. Mel came up on Monday and as we were leaving the reserve I decided to show her the nest with the oldest chicks – they had diphtheria.
Jan came with me on Tuesday and we found diphtheria in 30 of the 42 nests that still have chicks in them. Fortunately, only one chick had died so I think we caught the outbreak in time. The other good thing is that the weather is great, so it is nice in the reserves.
Chris and I went to Oamaru on Thursday afternoon to count the Red-billed gulls nesting on the breakwater. Chris counted 140 nests.
By Friday we had had 4 chicks die, treated 45 and had 16 not infected. This outbreak is worse than last year. Yesterday we did a full round and 2 chicks were outside their nest bowls – alive but cold so likely to die. We put them back under their parents and hope for the best. 2/3 of the infected chicks had responded well to the antibiotics and there are only 10 nests left to treat.
We saw the first new seal pups of the season and the Red-billed gulls here have increased from last season.
Have a great week