UK - Tension over protection of rare birds on Ecréhous

Feathers are being ruffled on the Ecréhous over protection of the offshore reef’s nesting birds – including two breeding pairs of ‘extremely rare’ roseate terns.

It is thought there are now only around 100 pairs of the seabirds in mainland UK, making the Ecréhous a site of national importance.

The reef is part of the Jersey National Park and also a Ramsar site which, from May to August, is the chosen nesting place for a range of birds.

Tension has arisen as local conservationist and marine biology expert Nick Jouault’s unofficial efforts to protect the common terns’ nesting sites have met with resistance on the reef. Mr Jouault has been visiting the Ecréhous since he was a child and spends his spare time on the islands observing and recording the large variety of natural life, including the birds.

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