Plight of Norfolk’s little terns highlighted in free boat trip at Blakeney

PUBLISHED: 07:00 30 June 2014 | UPDATED: 11:45 30 June 2014

A Little Tern nesting on Gt. Yarmouth beach. Picture: Keiron Tovell

A Little Tern nesting on Gt. Yarmouth beach. Picture: Keiron Tovell


A rare chattering seabird which migrates to parts of Norfolk to raise its young is under threat from walkers who stray too close to breeding colonies.

The little tern, which chooses some of the county’s shingle beaches to lay and incubate eggs, can become disturbed by walkers and fly off leaving its young vulnerable to predators.

And to highlight their plight, the National Trust has organised a Blakeney boat trip, allowing bird enthusiasts to spot the little terns feeding out at sea.

Although a trip planned for Friday was cancelled due to bad weather, the trust has re-arranged the trip and has called for the public to attend.

Seasonal ranger Paul Nichols said the trip was to highlight the colony and aimed to stop the decline in the little terns. He said: “We are hoping to gain public awareness to make people aware of the issues and dangers facing the little terns.

“They need quiet shingle beaches with little vegetation, but all their favourite places are places people like.

“We are trying to give them a bit more space as the eggs are very small and will crack easily. If you see fences around an area with little terns, give them a wide berth. Every year we get people who will walk through the fences.”

To take part in the free boat trip visit the National Trust Blakeney website over the next two weeks.

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