Captain Coquet’s Corner: European funding for Coquet Island
Funding has been secured for the RSPB’s work on Coquet Island from the European LIFE fund, to progress the work on safeguarding the roseate tern population there. Coquet Island is the only place left in the United Kingdom where roseate terns nest.
The funding comes as the numbers of nesting roseates have topped the 100 mark for the first time since the reserve became a nature sanctuary in the 1970s.
Paul Morrison, Coquet’s site manager, explains: “A lot of effort has been devoted to safeguarding and providing ideal conditions for the roseate terns on Coquet Island, and as a result, the numbers attracted to the island have increased gently but steadily over the past 15 years.
“This is set against a backdrop of total decline and loss of roseate colonies elsewhere in the country.
This funding will help with continuing our work on Coquet for the next five years and also aims to help re-establish roseate terns in places in Europe where they were once colonised.”
Coquet Island, despite its tiny size, is home to more than 44,000 nesting seabirds each year and is now firmly on the international stage for conservation best practice.
The safeguarding project was launched on October 1 and one of the plans is to provide a live video link from the island to the World Wide Web, so everyone can enjoy seeing the bird spectacle on Coquet Island.