ABO launches with a visit from Countryfile!

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Although only starting operations in March, the ABO received a visit from the team from BBC’s Countryfile (you can watch it on iplayer) in late April. Matt Baker and the team were able to catch on film just what a spectacular place Alderney is for bird migration – in fact it has surpassed all expectations with 3,500 birds having been ringed by the end of April.

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John, Cathy, Ike the dog and Matt with the rest of the Countryfile crew on the ramparts of the Nunnery

ABO Warden, John Horton, and the Alderney Wildlife Trust team explain how the ABO aims to become the 19th accredited bird observatory in Britain and Ireland as it develops over the next two years and show the film crew bird ringing and recording.  The crew was also introduced to Alderney’s rather spectacular display of migrant and resident moths thanks to local lepidopterist David Wedd.

Become a Founder Member and help establish the ABO

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The ABO team watching dawn over Longis Bay from the ramparts of the Nunnery.

ABO is fortunate to be based in ‘The Nunnery’, the oldest standing building in the Channel Islands and the best preserved Roman small fort in the British Isles.  Being of huge historic importance, the plan is to develop it into a publically accessible heritage site for the benefit of Alderney, which will also house the ABO and  Field Centre.

We are running two membership schemes  – the Ordinary Member scheme and we are inviting people to be part of this exciting new venture by joining as a Founder Member to help firmly establish the observatory.  John Horton, who as warden will be heading the development of both ABO and the Field Centre, has generously agreed to undertake the warden’s role in a voluntary capacity for the first two years to get the project up and running.

Become a MEMBER and help shape ABO’s future.

Once all the necessary permissions have been received, the funds necessary to equip the new Field Centre will have to be raised (please contact us if you are interested in sponsoring any part of the project), with plans to open the Centre in March 2017.


The Nunnery seen from across the Longis Nature Reserve which it adjoins.

The Nunnery was refurbished as an 18th century gun battery then served as barracks, hospital, married quarters and farm. Finally it was converted to Resistance Nest ‘Piratenschloss’ by the Germans and there are a network of bunkers and machine gun posts (without guns!) in the Nunnery garden. Until recently it has been let as three residential accommodation units.

Work will continue for many years into the future to better understand the nearly 2,000 years of occupation, with plans for the hostel to accommodate archeologists on summer digs, as well as ABO members visiting the island.

Please consider making a donation to support the ABO or why not become a MEMBER and help shape its future.

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