In September we reported in the media that a pair of Seychelles Kestrels (Katiti) had taken up residence in an aircraft hangar at the airport. Don Du Preez, who works there, called us for advice, as there were plans to renovate the roof, and he was anxious to minimise disturbance to the birds.
Katiti © C. Jameson
Following our visit to give advice, the roof repairs were put on hold, to allow the kestrels to finish breeding. We are delighted to report that the young have now fledged and are taking flying lessons of their own. We also provided two nest boxes for installation when the renovations are complete.
Stepping up the research
Small steps for a man, but giant steps for the Katiti?the photograph (left) shows Terence Vel (holding ladder) and Russel Moustache, computing engineer at Seychelles Broadcasting Corporation, climbing to reach a Katiti roost site at Broadcasting House. Mr Moustache contacted us in response to our request to the public for Katiti feathers to help with a genetic study with the University of Kent. 'Sometimes in the evening the Katiti can be seen just sitting there above the office door. There are often feathers on the floor here,' he told us.
We have been leading on a long-term programme of conservation action for the Katiti including population studies and educational activities on Mahe and Praslin. Its small size makes the Katiti vulnerable to introduced pest species, including rats, cats, Mynahs and Barn Owls.
Vagrant falcon found on ship
Eurasian hobby © T. Vel
Fairy tale ends happily
The baby Fairy Tern you see in the photo was brought to Nature Seychelles after it had been found on the ground. Happily, a foster home was found for it, and after a few weeks of living on a TV aerial and eating fish scraps, the bird finally took off for good, in the company of another Fairy Tern.
Baby fairy tern rescued © C. Jameson
We hope that the pair can find their way to a seabird sanctuary like Cousin Island, to settle down.