On South Georgia Island, located in the Southern Atlantic Ocean, populations of ground-nesting native seabirds (including two endemic species, the South Georgia Pipit and the South Georgia Pintail) have been decimated by the introduced Norway Brown Rat. Since 2011, the Friends of South Georgia Island have been working to eradicate rats and mice from the island. The island was baited in three phases, during 2011, 2013 and 2015, with support from FIF during 2012, 2013 and 2014. Although researchers believe that these treatments were successful, additional monitoring is needed to be sure that all rodents are now gone from the island.
FIF’s 2016 grant to the Friends of South Georgia Island will help fund the fourth phase of this project, a yacht-based survey of the island to check for any remaining rodents. In addition to looking for signs of rodents, the team hopes to find nesting pipits, pintails, petrels, prions, albatross and other seabirds. If successful, this project will represent the largest rodent eradication on earth, and the first time South Georgia Island has been rodent-free in more than 200 years.
For more information on the Friends of South Georgia Island and the Rat Removal project, visit: http://www.fosgi.org/
- Year of grant: 2016
- Amount: $15,000
- Grantee: Friends of South Georgia Island