Bildtext får vara max två rader text. Hela texten ska högerjusteras om den bara ska innehålla fotobyline! Photo: B. Christensen/Azote
Artificial breeding site offers perfect platform for seabird observations
On the island of Stora Karlsö, the steel built lab gives researchers access to observe the largest seabird colony in the Baltic Sea
A BIRDWATHCER'S PARADISE: A 45-minute boat ride from the Swedish island of Gotland, lies Stora Karlsö, the second oldest natural reserve in the world. Known for its abundant bird life, this is not just a breeding ground for guillemots, common murres and razorbills, it is also a birdwatcher's paradise.
The island offers a spectacular scenery to observe these auk seabirds up close.
Observations on the birds have taken place since 1913, but in 2008 it took on a new dimension when an artificial breeding ground was built.
The Karlsö Auk Lab enables high-resolution studies with minimal disturbance of the breeding birds. Building materials and location were chosen to minimize environmental impact.
The lab was constructed to allow future outfitting with a range of high-technology devices. Since most of the fledged murre chicks in the subcolony have been ringed over the last 15 years, this enable recruitment and studies of birds with known life-history.
Improving the marine ecosystem
Today about 75 pairs of common murres are breeding, and there is room for about 300 pair in total. Ten pairs of razorbills also breed there, with the potential increase this to 60 pairs.
"We are be able to perform seabird studies with a resolution and technologies that are impossible in a strictly natural environment," says centre researcher Olof Olsson who has been involved in the work since the start.
Better knowledge of links between seabirds and their environment means the seabirds act as 'indicators' for how the marine ecosystem is fairing.
That in turn can help improve marine ecosystem-based management.
The Auk Lab was sponsored by WWF Sweden and was established in collaboration with the non-profit company owing the island, Karlsö Jagt- och Djurskyddsförenings AB.
Watch video below where Olof Olsson explains how seabirds hunt for fish and how changing circumstances can affect their survival:
Research news | 2021-10-16
Centre receives substantial research funding on sustainable food production
IKEA Foundation grants 30 million SEK for continued research on more sustainable and just food systems. Gullspång Invest and its subsidiary Gullspång Re:food contribute additional 5 million SEK
Research news | 2021-10-16
Beatrice Crona appointed professor in sustainability science
Deputy science director selected for newly established professorship in sustainability science with focus on sustainable food systems
Research news | 2021-10-11
Low exposure to green areas may lead to higher rates of COVID-19 cases
New analysis links COVID-19 to nature inequity, showing communities of color face starkest burden
Research news | 2021-10-04
How cities play a crucial role in the transition to a carbon-free world
In connection with World Habitat Day, centre experts explain why cities are at the centre of planetary efforts to reduce our carbon footprint
Educational news | 2021-09-30
New MOOC on how to deal with the climate crisis
Learn how to drive the social change that is fundamentally required for an effective response to climate change
Research news | 2021-09-29
Ready for anything
Centre theme leader Cibele Queiroz explains why diversity is important in turbulent times