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One Good Tern Deserves Another

Osmington Mills Beach EMMA RANCE

2:09pm 27th June 2013

A rare bird colony which faced extinction from the South West Coastline has been given a lifeline from Dorset conservationists.

The Little Terns come to Chesil Beach every year to nest, but their numbers have dropped due to inappropriate nesting conditions.

Local wildlife organisations and volunteers have come together to help the birds build their nests.

They realised the nests on the pebbles were too draughty so have placed a hanging basket full of sand under some of the eggs.

So far this year eleven new chicks have hatched.

The birds travel all the way from Africa to nest on our coastline.

Wessex FM spoke to John Dadds, RSPB team leader for the Little Tern Colony protection scheme, who told us how vital their work had been, "The colony was 100 pairs in 1997, and within 10 years that dropped to just 10 pairs, which is when the RSPB came in and took over the management of the colony, and with funding from the land owner, the crown court, and more, we've managed to have 24 hour wardening and we've now managed to get the colony back from 10 pairs to 25 pairs in just 3 years."

John also wanted to thank 30 volunteers of whom he said, "without them it would be very difficult to be successful." He added that they help chase off predators day and night.

The little terns are now feeding in the shallow waters of the Fleet.

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