Baie de Somme

December 2006

Shorebird feeding areas in the Baie de Somme are under pressure from several anthropogenic and some natural factors. These include cockle fishing, hunting, disturbance from tourism, increasing areas of cord grass and raising of shore levels due to sedimentation.

Issues

How will shorebird survival and body condition be affected by (1) changing the area available for hunting (2) banning hunting of curlew and oystercatcher (3) changing the number of people allowed in the nature reserve (4) changing the area of cord grass and (5) raising shore levels.

Modelling

A model was developed incorporating the four main shorebirds found on the Baie de Somme (dunlin, ringed plover, curlew and oystercatcher) and their invertebrate prey. Data on bird numbers was being provided by the Syndicat Mixte pour l’Aménagement de la Côte Picarde (SMACOPI). Data on invertebrate biomass densities and cockle stocks was being provided by the Groupe d’Etude des Milieux Estuariens et Littoraux (GEMEL). Model simulations explored the effect of various changes on shorebird mortality and body condition.

Results

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Funding and Collaboration

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Related Paper:

Durell, S. E. A. le V. dit, Stillman, R. A., Triplet, P., Desprez, M., Fagot, C., Loquet, N., Sueur, F. & Goss-Custard, J. D. (2008) Using an individual-based model to inform estuary management in the Baie de Somme, France. Oryx, 42, 265-277.