Monday, 19 May 2014

Weekend Update

So with the news that the first Black Guillemot egg was laid on Rockabill last week (see Friday's blog post here), we've started to check all of our Black Guillemot nest-holes and nestboxes for eggs. There were no new eggs on Saturday, but we found another four yesterday, belonging to three different pairs - two eggs in a nestbox, one in a hole in a stone wall (see pic below) and another in a hole similar to the one where we found the first egg on Friday!

Several of the larger holes in this stone wall are used as nesting sites by Black Guillemots.
Black Guillemots (Picture taken under  NPWS license)

The picture below shows the size of a Black Guillemot egg. This egg was found on one of our first days on the island and was one of last year's that didn't hatch. The colour is a bit washed-out from all the weather over the last 12 months - their eggs are similarly spotted but are a light shade of blue.

An old Black Guillemot egg, around 2.5 inches long. The blue colour has faded but you can still see the spots and markings that give the egg camouflage.

The first egg found on Rockabill this year - a Black Guillemot egg. (Picture taken under  NPWS license)

Black Guillemot eggs take 28-32 eggs to hatch, so we should see their chicks in mid-June. Until then we'll have plenty more nests to monitor and eggs to record!

- Brian and Donnacha

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