Out there, somewhere, were thousands of Manx Shearwaters
, a seabird that spends the northern winter here.
The new marine special protection area (SPA) in the Irish Sea between the Isle of Man and Anglesey is home to the largest known aggregation of Manx shearwaters
, which can number up to 12,000 in the area.
A further marine SPA has also been announced in the Irish Sea between the Isle of Man and Anglesey, home to the largest known aggregation of Manx shearwaters
1 Once common on the Isles of Scilly, by 2014 Manx shearwaters
(pictured right) were on the verge of extinction.
In 2001, Manx shearwaters
on Lundy Island, Devon, were virtually unable to breed because of predation from rats, but a project to eradicate the predators saw the birds make a spectacular recovery.
The steep island, which dramatically rises more than 700ft out of the Atlantic Ocean, is home to puffins, manx shearwaters
and storm petrels as well as Guillemots and Kittiwakes.
The prevailing wind should push them further north along with other birds such as Manx Shearwaters
, Sabine's Gulls, four species of Skua and some Petrels.
While studying a colony of Manx Shearwaters
(Puffinus puffinus), on the island of Skomer, researchers from the University's Faculty of Biological Sciences noticed that parent birds seemed to become increasingly insensitive to their chicks' demands for food as they grew close to fledging.
Fans of traditional pubs migrate to Pontfaen where beer is served through a hatch at The Dyffryn Arms, aka 'Bessies' in honour of the octogenarian landlady, while the tiny port of Porthgain offers The Sloop pub, and, from a nearby headland, views of the sun sinking into the sea and manx shearwaters
skimming the surface at dusk as they head to nests on Ramsey Island.
The decision was taken to send in a rodent control team to protect colonies of Manx shearwaters
The UK and Ireland support a large part of the world populations of a number of seabirds, including 90 per cent of the world's Manx shearwaters
, many on RSPB reserves in the UK.
Some species, such as storm petrels and Manx shearwaters
, not only nest underground but only come out at night.