Notice

2016 - Grant Award - £500

Little Tern Project at Chesil Beach

Little terns are one of the rarest and most threatened seabirds in the UK. Throughout the summer months, they breed upon Britain’s coastal scrapes and pebbly shores. However, habitat loss, predation and coastal recreation have resulted in catastrophic species declines. Chesil Beach in Dorset is one of the few places in the UK where people can see the little tern. Having experienced species losses of up to 95%, we have been working in partnership to protect the area’s little tern population.

The project involves the erection of an exclusion fence, crucially preventing fox access. This remains under the 24-hour watch of our volunteer and warden team.  Thanks to Sea Changers, we will be able to replace this exclusion fence which, due to salt spray, had reached the end of its operational life. Having this secured area will ensure the colony can breed safely, fostering conditions for fledgling success.

By increasing protection, the volunteer and warden team will be able to continue to educate the public about these birds, raising awareness for marine protection. Ensuring another successful breeding season and increasing knowledge will help us to achieve a future whereby little tern populations reach sustainable numbers.

2014 - Grant Award - £920

Bogside Flats Estuary Clean-up and Workshop.

The Garnock Valley Futurescape is part of RSPBs landscape conservation programme. The project aims to work with local partners, landowners and communities in and around the Garnock Valley and Irvine, to make this region an even better place for wildlife.

RSPB will be using funding from Seachangers to run two free wildlife workshops at Irvine Harbour to inspire people about the areas importance for coastal wildlife. These will focus on the incredible invertebrate fauna of Ayrshire’s important dune systems, giving participants opportunity to learn about the different insects that live in this rich habitat and the methods that can be used to survey them.

We’ll also be using funds to run a community cleanup around Bogside racecourse, part of Bogside Estuary Special Site of Scientific Interest (SSSI), to improve this intertidal habitat for the wintering and breeding shore birds, for which it is so important

2013 - Grant award - £500

RSPBWester Ross Education Event 

RSPB’s project in Wester Ross to bring together specialists drawn from local and national organisations to deliver two days of informative, fun activities for children that will radically alter their impressions of the marine environment and leave them with a greater sense of awe and responsibility.

On the 2nd and 3rd October over 300 primary school pupils from Wester Ross and Sutherland schools between Shieldaig and Stoer will have the opportunity to take part in a Marine Education Event based at Ullapool Primary School or the Gairloch Community Hall.  The education days are being run by a partnership led by the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) and the Wester Ross Environment Network, with the Marine Conservation Society, Wester Ross Fisheries Trust, Scottish Natural Heritage and The National Trust for Scotland, along with other specialists brought in for their expertise.

Each pupil will take part in four out of the eight workshops run throughout the day, covering a variety of topics, including: marine mammals and other sea life; sea eagles, seabirds and the science used to study them; the effects of pollution; how we use the sea; traditional fishing skills; and how our seas influence our climate as well as how they have inspired art, stories and song.  Through attending this event, pupils will gain an insight into this marine ecosystem, and its effects on us as well as our impacts upon it.

Wester Ross Fisheries Trust biologist, Peter Cunningham, said: “This is a rare opportunity for so many marine specialists to be available locally for pupils in Wester Ross.  We’re really looking forward to exploring what lies beneath the surface of the sea with the children and learning about why wild fish are important for people, birds and other wildlife.”

In addition to the partners’ contribution to this event, the Marine Education Days are funded by the RSPB SEEVIEWS Project (RSPB and HLF), Sea-Changers, Wester Ross Environment Network, Highland Council and Scottish Natural Heritage.

 

RSPB Wester Ross

2012 - Grant awarded £500

Skye and Lochlash Education Event

More than 300 primary school pupils from Skye and Lochalsh took part in two special  Marine Education Days hosted at the Aros Centre in Portree on the 12th and 13th March 2013.  Dr Alison MacLennan, the RSPB’s conservation officer for Skye said, “Most of us live close to the sea, yet few of us know much about it.  Skye and Lochalsh has a long and varied coastline, ranging from sheltered sea lochs to exposed rocky shores, but few of us venture further than the depth of our wellies to see what is lurking beneath the waves and fewer still appreciate the importance of the vast bodies of water that make up our oceans beyond.  We probably recognise food species such as crab and prawn, and the huge basking sharks that skulk past our coastline each year, but most of the estimated 8,000 species that live in Scotland’s seas remain a mystery to us.

The workshops included: marine mammals; sea eagles, seabirds and the science used to study them; the effects of pollution; how we use the sea; traditional fishing skills; and how our seas influence our climate as well as how they have inspired art, stories and song.  Through attending this event, pupils gained an  an insight into this marine ecosystem, and its effects on us as well as our impacts upon it.  Schools throughout  Skye, Lochalsh, Knoydart and the Small Isles attended the event, which will allowed groups of pupils to learn about and experience different aspects of the marine environment through a variety of media, including hands-on science based workshops.

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