Justin Lyons has asked that his reply to my little rant the other day be posted on the blog and I am pleased to do so and very much appreciate his response:
Yes disturbance by dogs and people of migratory birds is an issue at high tide and is something that we are aware of and consider an important issue and yes I think we could try do more about it. I would however like to point out.Seasonal staff and permanent staff do try to educate dog owners on a regular basis of the issues relating to disturbance of birds at high tide and other times. Unfortunately the advise is frequently ignored or is greeted with rudeness. The individual that I think John is referring to is somebody who has been visiting the site for many years and we have talked to him many many times.
- John's remarks that staff are only ever seen at the entrance collecting car park fees is an unfair reflection of the good work they carry out throughout the dunes, saltmarsh and foreshore from interpretation to visitor and site management to monitoring. We have had a reduction in permanent staff over the last 3 year and a reduced budget which means the seasonal staff have to do more of the general maintenance.
- High tide often fall outside staff working hours or when we have no staff available.
- I have been working here for the last 19 years and have not seen a major change in the working patterns of the seasonal staff in terms of deterring disturbance of migratory birds by dog owners and their dogs. We have however seen an increase in use of the site by dog walkers since the ban on dogs on the bathing beach of Borth during the summer, this has caused an increase in dog walkers at Ynyslas and corresponding negative affects with disturbance of wildlife in general and the various problems associated with dog fouling.
Try and devote more staff to educating dog owners to high tides during migratory periods if they fall within the working day.
- Use our facebook page to educate/encourage appropriate behaviour by dog owners.
- Consider signage at North Point to interpret the use of the estuary by migratory birds and the issues relating to disturbance.
- I have just been told that there is somebody in NRW who has experience and has a role in altering dog owners and their dogs behaviour, I shall get in contact with them to find out if they can help in any way.
Rheolwr Gwarchodfeydd/Reserve Manager Dyfi NNR
Cyfoeth Naturiol Cymru / Natural Resources Wales
Ffôn/Tel: 01970 872 900
Ffôn symudol / Mobile: 07718 358 680