Gannet Islands, NL
The Gannet Islands for an Ecological Reserve in Newfoundland and Labrador, and an Arctic Council, Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna, C-Bird monitoring site. The cluster is home to North America's largest Razorbill (Alca torda) colony, as well as fantastic colonies of Atlantic Puffin (Fratercula arctica), Common Murre (Uria aalge) and Thick-billed Murre (Uria lomvia). There are also large aggregations of Harlequin Ducks (Histrionicus histrioncus) in the summer, and a smattering of other seabirds (guillemots, gulls, storm-petrels). This has been a long-term, seabird research and monitoring site for Environment and Climate Change Canada, with involvement from university researchers from various campuses in Maritime Canada.
We initiated work there in 2015, linking diet and trophic position to seasonal foraging movements of the four alcid species (above). Our long-term plan is to look environmental conditions and movements of birds from this site to similar movements at other colonies farther north, to determine colony-specific key habitat sites and use, and develop guidelines for safe access and human activities around these key marine sites.