Swift Terns are one of the few
locally-breeding seabirds whose numbers are increasing., To help understand
the main factors driving the positive trend of this species, a team of
researchers from the Percy FitzPatrick Institute and the Animal Demography
Unit at the University of Cape Town marked 500 Swift Tern chicks from Robben
Island in April 2013 and 2014 with metal and individually engraved colour
rings. In 2013, members of the public reported how these birds dispersed,
providing information on the fledging success, survival and dispersal of
juvenile Swift Terns, which were re-sighted from Namibia to the Eastern
Cape. Gathering dispersal records is a time consuming but important task
that relies on assistance from volunteers across southern Africa.
Rings in 2014 are orange and yellow
(with black text) and green and blue (with white text), and are engraved
with an “A” followed by a letter and a number (e.g. AU2). Rings from 2013
are yellow and white (with black text) and green and blue (with white text),
and bear a code of one letter and one number (e.g. U2). The majority of the
colour rings are top-down and all are on the right leg.
If you see any ringed birds please
record their location as accurately as possible (ideally GPS), the date and
time of sighting, ring colour, letters on the ring (if legible) and age
class (juvenile or immature). If a bird is found dead, please also record
the number of the metal ring. Send the
information to Davide Gaglio at
Thanks for your help!