Yesterday Adrienne Stratford and I engaged in a spot of essential Chough home improvement on Anglesey. One of the nests I ring there is in a bit of a precarious location on a narrow ledge in a dripping sea cave and in wet springs (most!) the back wall of the cave sheds water straight into the nest cup. The chicks, if they survive that long, invariably end up sitting in a shitty wet nest with no lining (as the adults remove it when its wet) causing them to develop large callouses on their legs.. This year the pair failed to rear anything so we decided we'd try to improve their situation/chances by erecting a Barrett/Wimpey style alternative residence. Closely watched by a Sea King helicopter, possibly piloted by Will-1-is (although I believe he had better things to do this week), we lowered a three stage ladder, a large ecosheet nest-ledge and various bits of ironmongery down the cliff and into the cave. It will be a long and anxious wait to see if they take to it but fingers crossed for a dry and bouncy brood of four next year!
Hopefully, a highly desirable and dry new Chough nest site
.....with fitted furnishing!