Ways You Can Help
Oystercatchers and other shorebirds depend on the coast for survivaland because of habitat loss and human disturbance they require the cooperation and help of people that use the beach in order to survive the challenges of living on the shore and raising their young. When humans help oystercatchers and other shorebirds by sharing the beach, they are rewarded with the spectacle of wild birds and the opportunity to observe the drama that unfolds with every nesting season, every migration, and every winter. Here are some simple steps you can take to help oystercatchers and other birds.
At the Coast
- Respect all postings and obey all signage at the beach. The signs are there to help reduce disturbance to birds. When birds are disturbed off their nests, their eggs and chicks are exposed to danger from extreme temperatures and predators.
- Be attentive to birds. Even if you are outside a posting, if birds fly up or are agitated, you are too close. Move back and let them settle down.
- Birds need to rest and feed year-round. Having the space to do so can be the difference between life and death in a harsh winter or on a long migration. So, even when nesting season is over, avoid flushing flocks.
- Obey all dog ordinances. When and where dogs are allowed on the beach, keep them on a leash and away from nesting areas and feeding or resting flocks. Dogs look like birds’ natural predators and cause more stress and disturbance, even if they aren’t actively chasing them.
- Pack out all your trash, including food, and don’t feed gulls. They prey on eggs and chicks, as well as your potato chips!
- Tell your friends and family about oystercatchers and other coastal birds.
- Sign up to receive action alerts from Audubon and let your elected representatives know you care about birds.
- Donate to Audubon North Carolina to sustain our coastal program and the work it does to protect oystercatchers and other coastal birds.