and Description: This 3-acre island in eastern Casco Bay is located 1 ˝ miles south of Cundy's Harbor, Sagadahoc County. The island has a north facing beach, extensive tide pools, a rocky perimeter and a low lying interior dominated by shrubs. Jenny Island is owned by the Maine Dept. of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife and is cooperatively managed by the National Audubon Society.
Seabird and Restoration
History: Although, historic nesting records of tern use are scant, anecdotal reports suggests birds have used the site periodically over the last 40 years. Tern restoration began in 1991, with a gull management program. By 1993, Jenny Island was the only active tern colony in Casco Bay. Tern numbers peaked in 1998 with 1,175 pairs. However, significant predation by Great-horned Owls, Black-crowned Night-herons, and mink decimated this colony and by 2001 only 59 pairs nested. However, the colony has rebounded and in 2008, over 550 pairs of predominantly Common Terns nested.
Access: The Island
is closed to public visitation during the seabird breeding season
(April 1st to August 31st). Staff provides travel to the island
from the Bethel point area by motorized inflatable. The 1 ˝ mile
trip takes about 20 minutes. The Jenny Island landing, while unprotected,
is generally straight forward, however equipment has to be carried
over a sloping intertidal zone covered with extensive slippery
algae. Like all Audubon managed islands, all personal gear, food,
water, and supplies are rowed ashore. Island staff are also responsible
for securing their own supplies and groceries as needed when no
one is scheduled to arrive from the Audubon base camp in Bremen.
Use of personal vehicles is necessary.
Island Living and Accommodations: During
the field season 2 people work on the island at a time, and
with the exception of the supervisor, staff or volunteers remain
on the island for an average of 1-2 weeks. A 12 x 12 expedition
canvas tent and tarp covered wooden kitchen shelter serve as
the base camp and accommodate food storage and research equipment.
The "kitchen" is equipped with a refrigerator and propane stove. There are two tent platforms for personal use and a composting toilet. A solar system powers research needs including a computer and cell-phone.
Nesting and Migratory
Birds: Breeding waterbirds include primarily Common Terns, with small
numbers of Roseate and Arctic Terns. Common Eiders also nest here. Despite
the islands’ small
size and proximity to the mainland, 118 bird species have been recorded
on the island, including Maine notable records for Sooty Tern, Sabine’s
Gull, and Bridled Tern.
Island Monitoring, Research
and Management Projects: The Jenny Island field season begins
in late May and continues through late July. The island supervisor
is responsible for coordinating the timing of specific projects and
participation throughout the field season. Work includes, but is
not limited to the following projects; annual tern, laughing gull
and eider census, tern productivity and chick growth, tern provisioning
studies, laughing gull kleptoparasitism observations, vegetation
monitoring and management, daily weather and bird lists, and gull
and predator management.
here for a PDF map of Jenny Island
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