Saturday, July 30, 2022

Atlantic Puffins

Environmental & Science Education, STEM, Biodiversity, Nature, Wildlife, Art & Environment.

Ed Hessler

The Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales is one of 46 Wildlife Trusts across the UK. The area covers 9,787 km² (~3778 sq. mi)  in South and West Wales - including around half of Wales’ coastline. The Trusts owns and manages 110 nature reserves covering 2,007 hectares (~4959 acres), 50 of which are designated Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs), 10 are National Nature Reserves and 4 are islands, including Skomer and Skokholm islands.

It is the island Skomer that provides the setting for some lovely photographs of Atlantic puffins which may be seen in Nicola Bryan's BBC article, Wildlife photography:Magic of Skomer's puffins captured." About the puffins she tells us that "more than 38,000 Atlantic puffins begin to late March and will leave towards the end of July."

About their short residency, landscape & wildlife photographer Drew Buckley said "'If it was the same every day then it wouldn't be as special - it's this sort of fleeting glimpse and then you look forward to the next season."'  I've seen puffins once in my life and was first struck by how impeccably dressed they were, seemingly in formal wear but as Buckley notes they appear comical because they are clumsy on their feet "funny characters to watch really."  The island has no predators and the birds are fearlessly nosy, walking "up to your feet...climb over your camera bag,pull your shoe laces."'

Bryan includes more information about Buckley, puffin nesting, mating/parenting  behavior, nesting cycle and their future. They are listed "at risk of extinction."

Included, as usual, are links with more on this story.

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