Latest News

News updates from Cousin Island

18
November
2014

Elegance is overrated

photo by Martijn Hammers

Grace and elegance are two words that I generally wouldn’t associate with myself. Bish, bash, bosh is a more accurate description of my approach to life. The finesse may not always be there, but the job gets done. I’m efficient, but I’ll get dirt under my fingernails and probably spill something down my T-shirt in the process.

Categories: Living on a nature reserve, Turtles, Conservation, Volunteering, Nature People, Wildlife, Marine

07
October
2014

Volunteering on Cousin: Expectations vs Reality

Visitors arriving on Cousin Island

Before arriving on Cousin, my own expectations regarding the island and life as a volunteer were largely informed by both the Nature Seychelles website and the volunteer handbook, which in combination provide everything a prospective volunteer needs to know, from the moment they apply and start packing, right up until leaving the island. However, even with all this information on what I might expect from my time here, my experience so far has shown me that not everything was exactly as I had imagined it would be.

Categories: Living on a nature reserve, Conservation, Volunteering, Nature People, Wildlife

25
September
2014

Fantastic opening to turtle season

 

The first Hawksbill turtles of the season have landed on Cousin for nesting. On our very first turtle beach patrol on the 2nd of September, we discovered the relatively fresh tracks of a nesting female but were sadly too late to encounter the turtle herself.

Categories: Living on a nature reserve, Turtles, Conservation, Volunteering, Wildlife, Marine

17
September
2014

Witnessing bird behavior

Living life on Cousin Island is often equivalent to living in an Attenborough documentary or a living laboratory. Whilst tourists are exposed to an excellent taster during their one and a half hour tour of Cousin Island Special Reserve, its only through living on the Island and total immersion in the wildlife that you get to see some truly interesting behavior.

Categories: Living on a nature reserve, Conservation, Birds, Nature People, Seabirds, Wildlife

16
September
2014

Raising awareness on sea turtle conservation

I have chosen to produce a documentary showing the endless wildlife that calls Cousin Island home and the beautiful habitat they live in. I am Emily Corden, 20 years old and studying Marine and natural history photography at Falmouth University. I am in my third and final year of the course.

Categories: Living on a nature reserve, Turtles, Conservation, Wildlife, Marine

08
September
2014

Diary of a seychelles magpie robin

The Seychelles Magpie Robin is one the most popular and charismatic birds found on Cousin Island. It also heralds another of the Seychelles great conservation success stories.

Categories: Living on a nature reserve, Conservation, Birds, Volunteering, Nature People, Wildlife

03
September
2014

A First (Green) Turtle Hatching for Many

Thursday (28th August) was the much anticipated day when the Green Turtle nest in front of our Deputy Chief Warden’s house finally hatched. April had been keeping a watchful eye on the nest and had noted signs of activity from the chamber below evident on the surface sand.

Categories: Living on a nature reserve, Turtles, Conservation, Volunteering, Nature People, Wildlife, Marine

13
August
2014

A trip to Yorkshire to learn about bird pathology and a literary genius

 

As coordinator for the Seychelles Magpie-Robin Recovery Team (SMART), I am responsible for dealing with any issues that arise with this charismatic yet troubled species. For the past decade or so things have been running smoothly for the endangered bird having been translocated to four islands resulting in an upwards trend on each. Yet it is important to remember that we are still dealing with an endangered species, with around 280 birds in existence.

Categories: Living on a nature reserve, Conservation, Birds, Nature People, Seabirds, Tourism, Wildlife

11
August
2014

Seychelles warbler back from the brink

Seychelles News Agency 10Aug2014) - It’s the first conservation success story of its kind in the world: the Seychelles warbler (Acrocephalus sechellensis) was one of the most threatened bird species in the world in the 1960s – down to a total population of only 26 birds, conservation experts had to move fast to avert the birds from becoming entirely extinct.

Categories: Conservation, Birds, Nature People, Seabirds, Wildlife

08
August
2014

La vie est belle à Cousin

An English woman, an Irish man, and a French woman sat down one day to write about working on a nature reserve...

La vie est belle à Cousin. Our working week gets us up with the sunrise and back home 2 hours before sunset. There’s always loads of work to be done here on the island but also lots fun to be had.

Categories: Living on a nature reserve, Turtles, Conservation, Research, Birds, Volunteering, Seabirds

30
July
2014

Translocation of the fregrate warbler

Report on the translocation of the Seychelles warbler Acrocephalus sechellensis to establish a new population on Frégate Island, Seychelles, published in Conservation Evidence

Report Summary: In December 2011, 59 adult Seychelles warblers Acrocephalus sechellensis were translocated between two islands in the Seychelles. Birds were captured on Cousin Island and translocated to Frégate Island using a hard release method, with minimum time in captivity. Frégate had been previously identified as a suitable host for a substantial population of Seychelles warblers, although the presence of the species had never been confirmed on this island.


 

Categories: Conservation, Research, Birds, Volunteering, Seabirds, Wildlife

25
July
2014

Seychelles “island that belongs to birds” is barometer of the health of the Indian Ocean

 Fairy tern in flight photo by Martin Harvey

(Seychelles News Agency: July 25 2014; Wanjohi Kabukuru) Cousin Island Special Reserve known worldwide as “the island that belongs to birds’ in the Seychelles archipelago is living to its billing. It is teeming with birds again. Well, the nesting season is here again and thousands upon thousands of seabirds are flapping all over the island. It is a seabird celebration of Tropical Shearwater, White Terns, Bridled Terns, lesser Noddys and Brown Noddy’s which are all nesting in Cousin. At this time of the year visitors are strongly adviced not to come with their Sunday best outfits. Wide-brimmed hats at this time of the year are recommended as birds poop on shampooed hair or shiny pates is a surety.  Guano is literally everywhere.

Categories: Living on a nature reserve, Turtles, Conservation, Birds, Seabirds, Wildlife

17
July
2014

What else do volunteers get up to

Most of the time volunteers on Cousin Island enjoy the luxury of free weekends. This is a chance for everyone to let their hair down and explore the rest of the Seychelles. Particularly popular trip destinations include the islands of Mahe, Praslin and La Digue. 

Categories: Living on a nature reserve, Conservation, Research, Birds, Volunteering, Nature People

15
July
2014

Seabird census on Cousin completed

'The most important parameters for monitoring seabirds are the size and long-term trends of the breeding population and these can only be determined by repeated censuses over many years' (Burger and Lawrence, 2003).Seabird censuses have been carried out at regular intervals on Cousin during the last 10 years, allowing such trends to be monitored. 

Categories: Living on a nature reserve, Conservation, Research, Birds, Volunteering, Seabirds, Wildlife

09
July
2014

Seabird census on cousin

I arrived on Cousin Island five weeks ago. Since then, I have been involved in several ongoing projects such as monitoring the endemic Magpie-Robin and carrying out a skink census. My main project whilst I am here is to collect data for my final year thesis as part of my degree at Trinity College in Dublin.

Categories: Living on a nature reserve, Conservation, Research, Birds, Volunteering, Nature People, Seabirds, Wildlife

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