To put my love of coral into context, I just came from the GVI Seychelles expedition where I was conducting coral reef surveys looking at the composition and health of the reef. And to be honest I was having coral withdrawal. So as we splashed along in the sunshine through crystal clear water, unicorn fish and brown marble groupers dodging us, I could see the health of the little off shore reef.
Martin, a Kenyan bird researcher, was with us, and he loves birds as much as I love coral. He joined us so he could get to Kisite to see if the terns are nesting. As we bobbed along the waves to the island he told me how no research has been done on this bird colony for 40 years. His excitement was palpable. We paddled in over the coral rag and soft sand. The island is raised out the water at low tide, presenting a sharp coral vertical surface. But Martin scaled it in seconds, eager to see how his beloved birds were.
|Martin on Kisite Island|
|Kisite a few years ago when the Terns were breeding|
After a wander around the island he returned to climb back into the sea, the birds are not nesting... Yet. So as we splashed back to the boat you could see the cogs turning, he’d be back to check on these birds, and hopefully conduct the first research on this colony of turns in 40 years.