As many of you have noted, things are pretty quiet at the colony. The last few reports have reported only a few birds, anywhere from about 4 to 10 on the beach. I will go ahead and say that this will be the last official week of monitoring; that said, we may continue to have birds passing through on their way south and stopping at our preserve, and there are still lots of educational opportunities for you as a volunteer to talk with park visitors. If you are so inclined, please continue to do your shifts and send me data sheets until the last tern is seen.
That being said, it appears to have been a fantastic season! The latest nest count is 679, one of the highest for recent history of the colony. We will be calculating the fledgling per pair ratio over the next couple of months, which requires a lot of in-depth data analysis, and once those numbers are finalized, we will let you know. I may have preliminary numbers at the potluck, but I'm not promising.
We received grant money this year in partnership with the San Diego Zoo, and one of our goals is to improve the interpretation of the preserve. Keep your eye out near the main gate into the Colony to see some major improvements to the interpretive kiosks!
Thank you for all your dedication, time, and efforts this season! Know that your efforts have a direct impact on the conservation of this species and continue to make this colony one of the most successful colonies in the state. Every educational contact means one more potential advocate for Least Terns and helps keep their home a safe sanctuary for them. I look forward to hopefully seeing all of you at the potluck and next season when the terns return once again to California and Huntington State Beach.