FIJN RC, VAN BEMMELEN RSA, VERHOEK L & SCHEKKERMAN H (2023) Black-legged Kittiwake Rissa tridactyla research in the Dutch North Sea. LIMOSA 96 (3): 130-136.
In June 2023 a research project was initiated in one of the least known seabird colonies in the Netherlands; the Black-legged Kittiwake colony on former gas-production platform L7-B (53.60°N 4.20°E). Small numbers of breeding Black-legged Kittiwakes were first recorded at L7-B in June
2006. Over time the colony grew to approximately 200 breeding pairs in 2021. L7-B is planned to be removed or replaced in the near future, hence a solution needs to be found for the breeding Kittiwakes during and after operations. The project started in 2023 addresses the following
research questions: What is the colony size at L7-B? At what times of the year do Black-legged Kittiwakes use L7-B? What is the breeding success at L7-B? Where do breeding birds from L7-B forage? Where do they winter? On 6 June 2023 a field visit was made to the platform to count all nests present, deploy GPS-loggers on adult birds and place cameras for nest monitoring. In
total 350-400 appearantly occupied nests were present at L7-B that day, we captured 11 breeding adults of which 10 (6 ♀, 4 ♂) were tagged with a GPS-logger, and we installed six
cameras that take one picture each day for the entire year to come to monitor platform occupancy and breeding success. Next breeding season we will retrieve the recorded GPS-data and the cameras to access and analyse the data.
[pdf only for members] [dutch summary]