Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Hello, we would like to share two photos with you.

Because it is at this time of year when Cagarros are born, the first photo is of a newborn chick in the nest.

 The second photo is of another chick of the same age but this one had more bad luck than the first. It was killed by a cat, which threw it out of the nest eating only a small part of its body.

Unfortunately, the number of cats on the island of Corvo continues to grow, since the owners still have no option to sterilize their cats.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Endemics plants

Bom dia!
This very last weekend we (the new volunteers!) had the great opportunity to travel to Pico Island and to reach the highest summit in Portugal. Pico is located in the Central Group of the Archipelago, and its peak is 2351 m high! We managed to walk all the way to the top experiencing all kind of weather conditions: fog, cloud, rain and, luckily, when reaching the top crater and the Piquinho we could enjoy a clear blue sky and sun all around .

 We took this chance to compare the vegetation between islands and we were surprised by the abundance and diversity of endemic plants that are spread over Pico. Plenty of Azorean Heather, Azorean Cedar, Azorean Holy tree, Azorean Blueberry...it´s not what we are used to seeing in Corvo!While here (Corvo Island) the endemic species are reduced to small patches (some of them unreacheable up in the Caldeirão), in Pico they make up the main characteristics of the landscape. We learnt about a few more species such as Daboecia azorica and Calluna vulgaris, not present here in Corvo. All together they make a beautiful mix, as one day in the past they did everywhere in the Azores.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Mapping trough the island

Four weeks have passed and the team continue to map the exotic vegetation existing on Corvo island. The mornings pass between maps, pens and binoculars on the hands, good physical shape and a dose of good humour. During the afternoon the job is to transfer the maps onto the computer. 

Creating the maps allows us to visit places that we already miss and enjoy the good weather which has finally decided to show up on the island. And it was during the mapping of an area close to the Biological Altitude Reserve where we observed the heathers (Erica azorica) and Azorean endemic shrub (Viburnum treleasei) which we planted a few months ago. And fortunately the latter is growing fast and is totally adapted to the moss.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Most wanted Rodents at RBC?

Once again I am writing to tell you about our search  for rodents in Corvo`s Biological Reserve. So far this has only led to the capture of one "victim" of black rat Rattus rattus, which was a long time ago. This week, in addition to the usual monitoring of the bait boxes, we are trying to capture some rodents. If there are any rodents in RBC, watch your back because the team is watching you.

See you next week!

Common tern, boy or a girl?

Last week, we went down into the wonderful lagoon of Caldeirão, and by instinct or not we followed a different route than usual to reach the common tern's (Sterna hirundo) colony. By coincidence or not, we found one of these friends injured above a rock, close to the water.

So, after finishing the tern census, we brought him to recover at the Bird's Recovery Center in the village. It was on Pedro Domingo's watch that we dicovered that the boy was in fact a girl, after an egg appeared!
The female tern is at the Center with a great appetite and feeding by herself, and will stay there until she has made a full recovery - which we hope will happen very soon.
So we wish her a fast recovery.