Walk With the Birds
AUDUBON VOLUNTEERS SPOT THE WAY TO NESTING BIRDS AND CHICKS
By Pat Bradford
ON MONDAYS until mid-August, Audubon N.C.’s Wrightsville Beach bird stewards will continue to lead a
walk to view Wrightsville’s nesting colony of black skimmers, common terns, least terns and American
oystercatchers on the island’s south end.
“It’s a unique and wonderful way for a morning walk on the beach,” says Marlene Eader, volunteer
coordinator for Audubon N.C.
Wrightsville has the state’s largest nesting colony of black skimmers this year.
Completing a census in early June, Audubon stewards counted 184 nests; each nest has two parents and then the chicks.
“You can see them," Eader says. "We have oyster catcher chicks, least tern chicks. Common terns are hatching. These
come in from as far away as Brazil. The black skimmers come in from the northern part of South America.”
Above: On June 3 this mother tern looks over her chick. Opposite: Marlene Eader, volunteer coordinator for Audubon
NC, helps Brooke Perry view nesting shorebirds through a spotting scope on May 21. Brooke was at the bird sanctuary
for a field trip with the Rooty Rascals, a program for Wrightsville Beach Elementary School students sponsored by the
Harbor Island Garden Club.