It is always fascinating to see a pair of Spoon-billed Sandpiper displaying and chasing each other across the sparse tundra vegetation, despite a very reluctant spring and conditions that are still very cold. It is also reassuring to see these fragile little creatures returning to their familiar breeding grounds in Meino. It is now my fourth time to stay in this remote coastal fishing village, but it has been shocking over the past 10 years to follow the decline from a viable 80 pairs to only 12-15 in recent years.
I am privileged to lead this important mission this breeding season and I am grateful to see so many talented and dedicated members of our team present, though a little concerned about our last member Sayam who is waiting in Anadyr for good weather! Let’s hope the birds return in good numbers to allow us all to fulfil our conservation work successfully. Let’s also hope that spring will warm up the tundra a little bit more!