Gull Breeding Sites in the Bailiwick of Guernsey


N.B.  - This is not a comprehensive list of  gull nesting sites in the Bailiwick of Guernsey. It covers most (but not all) of the main sites. It is focused on those sites which are regularly visited for the purposes of studying our gull populations.

ALDERNEY

Burhou Island

Lying 5 km to the north of Alderney, Burhou is a low-lying island with a rocky shoreline. It is approximately one km long by 0.5 km wide. It is covered in low turf and bracken. Largely as a result of its rich seabird colonies, Burhou is an integral part of Alderney's Ramsar site.

The gulls populations of the island in 2008 were:-

Lesser Black-backed Gull    1,001 pairs
Herring Gull                            164 pairs      
Great Black-backed Gull         c30 pairs

Burhou is now (by far) the largest colony of Lesser Black-backed Gull in the Channel Islands. However, it appears to have undergone a rapid expansion in the past decade. During Operation Seafarer (1969/70) the population was 100 pairs. By the Seabird Colony Register (1985/88) this had grown to 274 pairs. There then appeared a period of stability with the Seabird 2000 count being 275 pairs. However, in 2005 a detailed census gave a total of 1,001 pairs. This has fluctuated a little between 972 pairs in 2006 and 923 pairs in 2007. The reasons for this rapid growth are not known.


Sark

L'Etac de Serk

A small islet which lies a short distance from the southern end of Little Sark. It is largely covered in coarse grasses with areas of sea beet and mallow. Various seabirds nest there including European Shag, Common Guillemot, Razorbill, Atlantic Puffin and small numbers of Great Black-backed, Lesser Black-backed and herring gulls.

          
       

Breniere

A small grass and rock covered islet adjacent to the southern end of Little Sark. Herring Gulls (c30-40 pairs), Lesser Black-backed Gulls (c 30 pairs), Great Black-backed Gull (one pair).

                                       

Moie de Lache

A  tiny islet just outside Creux Harbour in Big Sark. Herring Gulls (c 15 pairs), Lesser Black-backed Gull (c 8 prs).

                                   

Grande Moie


Rocky islet just outside Maseline Harbour, Big Sark. A few Lesser Black-backed and Herring gulls.

    

Petit Moie

Grande Moie's smaller sister rock - just outside Maseline harbour, Big Sark. Few gulls.

                                   



Les Burons

Another small set of stacks - some with grassy turf - just off Creux Harbour, Big Sark.

       

Brecqhou

An important island for breeding Lesser Black-backed Gulls (c 380 prs), Herring Gulls (80 - 110 prs) and Great Black-backed Gull (1-4 pairs).

                                   

Jethou

A small island owned by the Crown and leased to private owners. Bracken and woodland cover the higher ground, but there is little vegetation on the low cliffs of the eastern side. Gulls nest around the coastline, but also on Crevichon islet and (a few) on Grande Fauconniere islet.  Both islets are connected to Jethou at low tide  Gull populations = Herring Gull (c 170 prs), Lesser Black-backed Gull (30 - 50 prs), Great Black-backed Gull (30 - 40 prs).



                              Crevichon                                                                                                 Grande Fauconniere



                     Jethou (south-east)                                                                                            Jethou (north-east)

Herm - The Humps

A small group of  four islets to the north-east of Herm. Galeu has a little cover, a storm beach and some higher rocks. Godin is larger with a slightly elevated eastern end with some vegetation (including mallow and sea beet) and a stony beach. Longue Pierre is similar to Godin but is rockier, while Grande Amfroque is the most outlying. It has no vegetation.

Overall gull populations are in the order of Herring Gull (35 - 75 prs), Lesser Black-backed Gull ( 30 - 55 prs),and Great Black-backed Gull (22 - 37 prs).



                                Galeu                                                                                                                              Godin



                                Longue Pierre                                                                                                   Grande Amfroque

Guernsey Cliffs


The main gull nesting areas lie on the south coast, where the granite cliffs rise to 70 metres. Herring Gull = c 1,200 pairs, Lesser Black-backed Gull =  c 100 - 120 prs) and Great Black-backed Gull (30 -35 prs).



Lihou Island


A small island which is owned by the Guernsey government, and run as an open reserve (with seabird nesting areas closed during the breeding season). It is mostly covered in turk with areas of bracken, and has several outlying rocky islets where seabirds breed. Gull populations = Herring Gull (45-60 prs), Lesser Black-backed Gull (0-5 prs) and Great Black-backed Gull (30-45 prs).



                            Lihou Island                                                                            Lihou Island (from Pleinmont, Guernsey)