Monitoring van kustbroedvogels in de SBZ-V ‘Kustbroedvogels te Zeebrugge-Heist’ en de westelijke voorhaven van Zeebrugge tijdens het broedseizoen 2014

    Research output: Book/ReportReports of Research Institute for Nature and Forest

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    This report describes the fluctuations in the number of breeding pairs in the Special Protected Area under the Bird Directive ‘Kustbroedvogels te Zeebrugge-Heist’ and in the western port of Zeebrugge. These are by far the most important breeding sites for coastal breeders in Belgium and used to be of high importance for the biogeographical population as a whole. The quality of the breeding sites and the foraging areas is discussed and advice is given for a better management of the Special Protected Area.

    The populations of terns (Sandwich, Common and Little Tern) and Black-headed Gulls have decreased strongly since 2008 and the breeding success was insufficient for a stable population size. In Zeebrugge all 3 tern species used to exceed the threshold of 1% of their respective biogeographic population considerably. In 2014 none of the tern species reached this threshold. The decrease is due to persistent problems with land predators. Food availability seemed to play no role in this.

    Also some scarce species strongly declined in Zeebrugge. Crested Lark, Northern Wheatear, Mediterranean Gull and Yellow-legged Gull used to breed in the Zeebrugge port but in 2014 these species were no longer recorded. The numbers of Oystercatchers and Common Gull seem to have stabilised at a level much lower than before. Only the population of Common Ringed Plover is rather stable at about 8 pairs.

    Following a slight reduction in 2013, the populations of Herring and Lesser Black-backed Gulls further and strongly declined in 2014. Both species used to exceed the 1% level (maxima of 1.2 and 2.8%, respectively for Herring and Lesser Black-backed Gull), the number of Herring Gulls dropped to 0.2% of the total biogeographic population while that of Lesser Black-backed Gull dropped to 0.6%. This decline is due to disturbance by foxes and a decreased availability of suitable nesting areas.
    Original languageDutch
    PublisherInstituut voor Natuur- en Bosonderzoek
    Publication statusPublished - 2015

    Publication series

    NameRapporten van het Instituut voor Natuur- en Bosonderzoek

    Thematic list

    • Sea and coastal birds
    • Zeebrugge
    • Natura 2000 and conservation objectives

    EWI Biomedical sciences

    • B280-animal-ecology

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