Ronez Proud To Play Mother To Choughs

Ronez welcomed the return of the red-billed choughs to its quarry site, following the latest phase in the rare bird release programme in Jersey managed by Durrell.

The birds took a fancy to the quarry during their first free flight some time ago and regularly return to the quarry faces and buildings. Ronez has pledged its support for the welfare of its feathered friends and continues to work closely with conservation experts to ensure the birds are healthy and well cared for.

Paul Pinel, Sales Manager for Ronez, comments on the latest addition to the site: “The red-billed choughs are welcome visitors to the Jersey quarry and complement the range of biodiversity already on site. Having such a rare bird in our midst has caused quite a stir, staff and visitors are always pleased to catch a glimpse of them and they are being well looked after.

“We are assisting the conservation team at Durrell in their efforts to track the birds and have allowed them access to our viewing platform, from where they can monitor the welfare of the choughs without disturbing them.” Research suggests many birds favour the home- from-home habitat of quarry cliffs over their coastal counterparts because they provide protection from land based predators, and shelter from strong sea winds.
 

The Durrell and Birds on the Edge Chough Project 2018

The red-billed choughs are part of an ongoing restoration programme run by Durrell and Birds On The Edge, which supports active management of Jersey’s coastland to restore populations of birds including the red-billed choughs.

Paul concludes: “We are looking forward to working closely with Durrell and Birds On The Edge as more choughs are released over the coming years. Attracting the birds in this way, is a real testament to how well Ronez is managed as a safe and responsible quarry site and we are proud to be part of such an important programme.” The Ronez quarry in St John, Jersey has been serving Jersey since 1869, turning the Island’s natural granite resource into aggregates, ready-mixed concrete, asphalt, construction materials, precast concrete and paving products for the trade and retail sectors.

Changes in Jersey over the past 100 years and more have seen increasing development, agricultural intensification and a move away from mixed farms with a consequent loss of livestock grazing marginal areas of the coastline. This has led to the spread of invasive native and non-native species such as bracken and hottentot fig on our coast causing a loss of quality habitat.

These changes have exacerbated problems for local wildlife with the consequent loss and decline of many birds like the skylark, yellowhammer and stonechat. Birds On The Edge is a partnership of Durrell, States of Jersey Department of the Environment and National Trust for Jersey to support the active management of Jersey’s coastal land to restore populations of birds and bring the project’s emblem, the chough, back to the Island.

For more information on the red-billed choughs visit www.birdsontheedge.org or www.durrell.org.