We’re grateful for the relatively quiet week we’ve had at Sauble Beach! After the ups and downs we’ve experienced this month, there are still two nests, both of which are being incubated. Fortunately they seem to be in relatively dry locations, as there was a heavy rain on Sunday but the water seeped in quite quickly around both nesting areas. The anticipated hatch dates for these nests is July 18-20, although this is a very rough estimate as it is unclear when incubation began for either couple. Flag Boy is still at Sauble Beach as well.
Nest 4 was discovered on June 21 with a single egg. This pair appeared to begin incubating perhaps over the weekend. Nest 5 was found on June 22 with two eggs, and the couple seemed to be incubating already. We will be able to confirm the number of eggs in each nest once MNRF staff installs large exclosures over the nests.
A number of predators have been observed near the nesting areas lately. By-law officers and volunteers have seen a fox lingering in the Nest 4 area near 7th St. N, and a raccoon has been spotted there as well. A group of crows have also been pestering the couple at this nest. It seems that they are a permanent fixture at this site, as they’re showing up most days searching for food for their noisy, hungry chicks. Hopefully they will move on by the time the Piping Plover nests hatch in a few weeks. These predator observations reinforce the importance of removing food and trash from the beach to avoid predator attraction.
Check back soon for an update on how many eggs are in each nest!
UPDATE: Large exclosures were installed over both nests on June 29. Nest 4 has four eggs and Nest 5 has two.