Over 100 pairs of Little Terns have nested on Fort Bank close to the main channel in Wexford harbour.  These beautiful birds -the smallest of the five terns that nest on the shores of County Wexford every summer- are raising their newly-hatched chicks on the sand bars.  They are very easily disturbed so we ask people to keep away from the Fort Bank in July and early August while the chicks fledge. 

NPWS Ranger Tony Murray said: “The Little Terns’ eggs and chicks look like seashells on the beach, so anyone could easily trample on them. The last time a colony was located here, the birds failed to breed due to disturbance by people entering the breeding area. Dogs pose an even bigger danger so we are urging dog owners to take particular care”. 

 

“The number of birds using Wexford Harbour has been very significant over the last two years, making this one of the biggest colonies of Little Terns in Ireland. We hope that, with the cooperation of the public, hundreds of chicks will successfully fledge in the coming weeks.”

 

Please take care not to approach and disturb nesting birds at this important time.  Please read and follow any signs that have been set up in the nesting areas.  

 


Little terns on Fort Bank, their nests are simple scrapes in the sand and both eggs and chicks are camouflaged and easily stepped on. 


 

Tern chicks in centre of picture: note how small and easy to miss they are and do not approach.