Wednesday, 23 October 2013

What's happening?

Apologies for lapse in postings, the island is at an in between stage at the moment so this is the state of play at the moment.
Jeremy and I have finished our residential stay on the island for the season though I will be making day trips (weather permitting next week) and occasional night stays through the winter. The bird observatory is only manned for this week and next and then it closes down for the winter.  The builders working on the visitor centre have moved off the island as the seals have taken over the building site and the seal season is in full swing with pups being born all over the place. And with the start of seal season comes the seal researchers. So tomorrow, weather permitting 10 hard-core, dedicated and slightly bonkers scientists head out to the island for a 6 week stay. They will be carrying out a whole range of research looking at amongst other things, communications between mother and pup, using close-up remote control cameras to get film of behaviours, find out more about the carrion community  that helps dispose of the dead seals as well and the long-term monitoring of the seal population on the May including counting this years total of pups born, over 2000 a year for the last few years.
So though the posts will be less frequent over the winter I will try to keep you up to date on want is happening out there but in the meantime you can always what via the Scottish Seabird Centre webcams that are pointed at Pilgrims Haven, why not have a peak?
They look cute and cuddly but cuddle one of these and you may never play the guitar again. Seals have  very sharp teeth and strong jaws and carry a bacteria on their teeth that can cause a serious infection from a bite. So it is a case of let sleeping seals lie.

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