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Monitoring van kustbroedvogels in de SBZ-V ‘Kustbroedvogels te Zeebrugge-Heist’ en de westelijke voorhaven van Zeebrugge tijdens het broedseizoen 2013

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

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Original languageDutch
Number of pages40
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Publication series

NameRapporten van het Instituut voor Natuur- en Bosonderzoek
No.INBO.R.2014.5069870

Abstract

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 Flanders. The quality of the breeding sites and the foraging areas is discussed and advice is given for a better management of the colonies.

The populations of terns (Sandwich, Common and Little Tern) and Black-headed Gulls have decreased strongly since 2008 and the breeding success was not sufficient 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 2013 only the Common Tern 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 and Yellow-legged Gull have totally left the area and the number of Northern Wheatears reduced to 1 pair in 2013. Also Mediterranean Gull and Kentish Plovers strongly declined during the past decade. Oystercatchers and Common Gull seemed to have stabilised at a level much lower than before. Only the population of Common Ringed Plover is rather stable at about 8 pairs.

The populations of Herring and Lesser Black-backed Gulls also strongly declined in 2013. Where Lesser Black-backed gull still exceeds the 1% level (1.8% in 2013), the number of Herring Gulls dropped to 0.8% of the total biogeographic population. This decline is due to disturbance by foxes and a decreased availability of suitable nesting areas.
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