header image


Posted by: nina-karnovsky | June 26, 2017 | No Comment |

Clare received a Summer Undergraduate Research Grant to carry out seabird research this summer and sent in this update:

Right now I’m with the Audubon’s Project Puffin out on Seal Island, Maine, which is 25 miles off of the coast.  There are only 6 of us sharing our 65 acre island, which contains a cabin with a stove and a table and 6 tent platforms. We each have our own tent, and hang out there or around the cabin area during our downtime.

SEAL ISLAND, my tent does not have a tarp in this picture but it has one now.

While our main focus is helping restore puffins to Maine, we also work with all of the island seabirds- puffins, razorbills, common and arctic terns, guillemots, murres, and double crested and great cormorants.

A PUFFIN CHICK is the softest thing I’ve ever felt.

An average day starts with waking up at 5:45 to do the morning bird count at 6.  We then eat breakfast and have some coffee, and start working again at 8.  We’ll often do a blind stint in the morning, where we sit in a blind for three hours and try to read the bands on terns and puffins or conduct feeding studies where we keep track of what fish they’re feeding their chicks.  We’ll then break for lunch and leave the birds alone for the hottest part of the day, then start back up again around 2:30. We also do a lot of puffin and razorbill productivity checks, where we go around to their burrows in rock crevices and check to see if they’ve laid an egg, or if an egg has hatched.  We all take turns making dinner, then hang around in the cabin for a little bit chatting, before an early bed time of around 8:30.


Seal Island is absolutely beautiful, and I feel so lucky to get to work with such incredible birds every day!


Filed under: News, Puffin Project
Tags: , ,

Leave a response -

Your response: