Seabird productivity surveys
Lundy’s seabird colonies are protected under the islands’ Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and monitored through our Higher Level Stewardship agreement with Natural England. Each breeding season, the warden undertakes productivity monitoring for a select number of puffin, razorbill, kittiwake and guillemot colonies.
Surveys involve observing the colonies during the day and observation points are located on the west coast cliff tops.
Manx Shearwater surveys
Lundy became rat free in 2006 after an eradication programme which began in 2003. The impact of the rats on the seabird populations was of great concern with only 5 Puffins and 328 Manx Shearwaters recorded on the island in 2003. The Manx Shearwater colony has increased to over 3,500 and, in collaboration with RSPB, we will be monitoring specific plots across the island during the summer months to determine occupation levels.
The surveys involve moving across the islands, sometimes up and down the sidelands to reach the burrow sites and take place during the day.
The landing bay can become clogged with rubbish during the right conditions and we clear and record all types of rubbish through in line with the MCS Adopt-a-beach project. (Weather dependant, a steady easterly wind required).
Lundy is home to around 200 Atlantic grey seals. Each month two seal surveys are undertaken as required by the Special Area of Conservation which is monitored by the Warden on behalf of Natural England. To extend our understanding of the population, we have begun an ID programme, in collaboration with the Cornwall Seal Group, to record individuals. This involves photographing individual seals from the boat.
Population surveys can be carried out from the land or by sea using binoculars and the scope (land only).
During August and September the intertidal area in the Devil’s Kitchen is monitored to determine how the community of this species rich area changes. Please note that some experience is necessary.
Whales, dolphins and porpoises often pass by the island and are sometimes seen by observant visitors. To further understand the movements of cetaceans around the island, volunteers have the opportunity to spend time observing the seas around the island and recording any sightings using our sightings sheets developed with the charity MARINElife.
If you are interested in volunteering on Lundy please read through the General Information section and send us a completed Volunteer Application Form.