Here at Montrose Basin, we saw the return of the Common Terns to our specially constructed raft on 2nd May. This is a few days later than last year when the species was first seen on the raft on 28th April. The peak count so far has been 117 individuals on 20th May. Common Terns breed in Scotland in the summer, and the tern raft at the basin offers an idea location. One of the main threats to the population is predation of eggs. As the raft is situated on the basin and is behind the channel, the colony is safe from most mammals. Possibly the single greatest threat to the Common Tern breeding success is the American Mink. Here at Montrose Basin and at other reserves in the Scottish Wildlife Trust, we are working with the Scottish Mink Initiative, aiming to protect native wildlife by controlling the mink population.
Another summer breeder on the reserve, the Eider, is well ahead on previous years with ducklings seen already!! Last year the first record of ducklings was 5th June.
Sand Martins can be seen flitting in and out of the specially designed bank here at the centre. Hopefully we will see chicks peeping out of the holes in the wall soon.
Come to the Montrose Basin Visitor Centre to enjoy views of the tern raft, sand martin bank and other wildlife. Currently open 10.30am – 5pm seven days a week.
News from other reserves:
Ospreys are often seen fishing over the basin here at Montrose, but if you’re interested in Ospreys and are travelling in the Perthshire area, you may like to visit Loch of the Lowes near Dunkeld. It’s a fabulous reserve for ospreys with a pair nesting there every year. In fact the resident female returned for the 22nd time this year has hatched her 49th chick!!
If you’re fascinated by the fastest bird in the world, the Peregrine Falcon, why not visit the Falls of Clyde where two eyasses were recently ringed!
Anna – Montrose Basin Ranger