All in all, it looks like we are going to have a record-breaking Cahow nesting season; although I will not be absolutely certain for probably a couple of weeks, the total number of Cahow chicks this year looks like it is between 67 and 70 (compared to last year's record number of 61 fledged chicks). The Nonsuch Colony also has 13 pairs versus the prior record of 10 from 2017.
Many of the chicks are also developing a bit more quickly than usual, most likely due to the generally high winds and stormy conditions in the Western North Atlantic all through March. This is enabling the adult birds to make more feeding visits than usual during the vital early chick provisioning period, by utilizing free wind energy to make faster trips to & from the feeding areas. This certainly has been the case with the CahowCam chick, which has been fed on 5 of the last 7 nights, rather than the 2 or 3 feeds per week that is more typical.
Jeremy Madeiros | Senior Conservation Officer (Terrestrial) | Dept. of Environment and Natural Resources | BERMUDA