Seabird chicks at the Mote 6

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Least terns and black skimmers have been spending their summers at the Motel 6 in Cocoa Beach for over a decade now! This is no summer vacation though — these imperiled seabirds normally nest on sandy beaches but have adapted to using gravel rooftops like the one at this motel to lay their eggs. They make shallow depressions in the rooftop’s gravel as nest scrapes, lay their eggs, and bring fish back from the nearby ocean for their mates and young. At this spot, a small group of dedicated volunteers and motel staff kept an eye on them throughout the nesting season and gave a little help when needed along the way. Click on the photos to find out more!

A very big thank you to all of the seabird and shorebird stewards and volunteers across the state for helping during this year’s nesting season! Want to get involved in seabird and shorebird conservation


The nesting colony at the motel was checked on several times each day. If flightless chicks accidentally fell off the roof, motel staff and Florida Shorebird Alliance volunteer “chick-checkers

” from the Space Coast Shorebird Partnership found them and returned chicks to the roof using a device called a “chick-a-boom.” The chick-a-boom allowed them to safely and quickly return the chicks to the roof from the ground




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