A TEMPORARY dog exclusion zone will soon be in operation at Moggs Creek following several incidents involving dogs disturbing hooded plover nest sites, with beachgoers asked to keep an eye out for new signs.
Nesting activity indicates the temporary dog exclusion zone will be introduced by the Great Ocean Road Coast Committee (GORCC) soon after the plover eggs at Moggs Creek hatch, which could be as early as yesterday (Wednesday).
Other areas where hooded plover chicks are known to hatch, including Torquay’s Whites Beach, will also operate similar zones.
Hooded plover chicks are among the lowest surviving species in the world at 2.5 per cent and are listed as threatened under the Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988.
With dogs being one of the biggest threats to hooded plover chick survival, GORCC’s conservation team are working around the clock t ensure the four known breeding sites are protected.
Volunteers from Friends of the Hooded Plover Surf Coast (FoHPSC) have been monitoring nest sites and guarding the chicks daily during the nesting season, while GORCC’s conservation team have administered regular patrols.
Sue Guinness, FoHPSC regional co-ordinator, is asking the community for their co-operation during the breeding season.
“Breeding zones are an extremely important habitat for the hoodies,” she said.
“We ask that all beach users observe the exclusion zones to give chicks the best chance of survival.”
For more information or to become a volunteer, email firstname.lastname@example.org or head to birdlife.org.au/beach.