An encouraging message from Jocelyn Gifford, spokesperson for Roberts Bay Residents:
“Currently, Roberts Bay Residents are watching a tree just north of the Ardwell beach access that contains three nests occupied by active heron families with chicks. They are easily visible, and audible, from the beach and from Allbay Road at 10379.
Roberts Bay Residents can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.”
The 2018 redevelopment of a large property that contained the three “heron nesting trees” raised concerns with Friends of Shoal Harbour and Roberts Bay Residents regarding the continued viability of this well-used nesting site. The intrusion of noisy construction did not seem to bother the herons; these birds seem well-adapted to the human-nature interface. Whether the nesting trees will withstand the changes to soil composition and drainage caused by the redevelopment remains to be seen. Meantime, heron life goes on to the delight of us onlookers.
Update to June 9:
Heron life does go on with ups and downs. The “up” was a successful nesting and chick-rearing season. The “down” was a series of raids from eagles that wiped out the chicks. It’s hard not to feel sad but perhaps we should feel privileged to witness nature playing itself out on the edge of our urban environment. Hang in there, herons; better luck next year!