Beach wildlife affected after Cristobal flooding

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After surveying the damage left from Tropical Storm Cristobal, wildlife experts on the Coast are now reeling with the loss of many protected birds’ nests on our beaches.

Prior to the storm, there were 18 Least Tern colonies across Harrison and Hancock County, but massive flooding devastated them all.

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Many Least Tern chicks survived the storm surge and rehabbers say now hundreds of clapper rails have washed ashore from marshy ecosystems or barrier islands.

Audubon Mississippi Coastal Bird Stewardship Program Director Sarah Pacyna says there’s been a huge response from Gulf Coast wildlife rehabbers to save the birds in rough condition. “We’ve been working with Harrison County Sand Beach Authority and they are actually stopping some of their work with the debris clean up to try to give a chance for these birds to survive. So, just something for people to keep an eye out on the beach for these birds, they’re little brown birds with long legs.”

Pacyna advises anyone who finds a Least Tern egg to leave it where it is to give it a better chance at survival.

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