Young BirdLife Klabb Ħuttaf members yesterday evening took to the sea for a wildlife encounter with one of Malta’s most enigmatic birds, the scopoli’s shearwater.

The scopoli’s shearwater, known as Ċiefa, is the largest of Malta’s shearwater species. During the breeding season these birds raft in batches of 500 to 1,000 on the sea. As darkness falls they begin to leave the water and fly to their burrows in the cliffs to take turns in incubating their egg or to feed their growing chicks.

Setting out just before sunset, the group watched the shearwaters gather in “rafts” on the sea and after dark heading back to their nests in the cliffs.

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