Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Skokholm water testing visit

There were two major operations going on today around Skomer and Skokholm. Researchers from Oxford and Shefield Universities went to the Amos to recapture some Guillemots with geolocators and we also took Pembs County Council out to Skokholm to test their water supply. The former was moderately successful and 6 birds were recaptured. A number of chicks were also colour ringed as part of Shefield Universities long term studies on Guillemots.

Weather conditions were ideal for a trip to 'Skok' and the crossing was without incident. After tying our inflatable up in South Haven we had two hours on the island to check the water supply and take samples for analysis. Along the way we also recorded some wildlife (as would be expected from two members of wildlife trust staff!). We saw a Blackcap and a Chiffchaff around the Helgoland traps and recorded some rare lichens and invertabrates near the lighthouse. Whilst recording the purse web spiders we also heard some Storm Petrels calling from their burrows.

Nice weather that let us get over in our little boat.

The weather was warm, sunny and, most uncommon of all, still, so a wonderful day was had and we returned in the early afternoon to a balmy Skomer. On the journey back a Dark-green Fritillary and a probable Red Admiral were seen flying over the sea towards the mainland!

Red and blue pimpernel

Purse web spider webs under a stone in the quarry (one of only five sites in pembrokeshire and a BAP species!) note the big web for the adult and the tiny ones just above it for younger spiders. They take about five years to mature!

The water testers on the way to the lighthouse with Rich and Giselle
All pictures by Lewis Yates.

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