Cape Cod National Seashore 

With the return of spring, piping plovers have also returned to their breeding grounds on outer Cape Cod. They are now courting and establishing territories in preparation for nesting. Piping plovers continue to be listed as a threatened species under the Federal and Massachusetts Endangered Species Acts. The National Park Service, in coordination with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife, carries out management of the plover at Cape Cod National Seashore.

Piping plovers are ground nesting birds and raise their flightless chicks on beaches where they are vulnerable to predators, storm tides, and human disturbance. They are particularly sensitive to the presence of dogs. They perceive dogs as predators and are more readily disturbed when a dog is approaching than when only people are approaching. An even greater threat occurs when dogs are off-leash.  Most loose dogs naturally chase any movement on the beach including adult plovers and the flightless chicks, which can be killed in the process.

Kites also disturb the nesting and feeding behaviors of endangered shorebirds. Kites are perceived as large predators flying over the birds. This may scare the incubating parent off the nest, exposing the eggs to predators, hot or cold temperatures, cause nest abandonment, or disrupt feeding of the adult birds and their chicks.

To protect plovers and other ground nesting shorebirds including least terns and American oystercatcher, effective April 1, and until further notice, no pets or kite flying will be permitted on Coast Guard Beach south of the former Coast Guard Station in Eastham, and  at Jeremy Point in Wellfleet.  Also effective April 1, kite-surfing/boarding is prohibited on Cape Cod Bay-side beaches and Cape Cod Bay waters within the national seashore until the last chicks in the area have fledged.  Additional sections of the seashore’s ocean and bayside beaches that support nesting shorebirds may also be temporally closed to pets and kites.

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2009 Kitespeed World Championship 

After two rounds of racing yesterday, Alex Caizergues (FRA, F-One) and Melissa Gil (USA, Cabrinha) have taken the lead in this years speed world championship, held in Port St. Louis, France.

In total, 35 competitors registered for the first event of the season, and although the weather forecast is not brilliant for the upcoming days, there is hope for the weekend to bring more wind to allow for more racing.

The first heat of the competition was won by Rob Douglas (USA, Cabrinha), the first kiter that broke the speedsailing dominance of the windsurfers last year in Luderitz, and one of the three kiteboarders that made it over 50 knots. Heat two was then won by World Record Holder Alex Caizergues. Second in both legs was Sylvain Hoceini, ensuring him a second place in the overall ranking as well. Rob Douglas is in third overall, and US course racing star Damien Leroy (Cabrinha) on an excellent fourth place in his first speed competition. In fifth, local hero Sylvain Maurin (FRA, F-One).

In the womens fleet, newcomer Melissa Gil was able to defeat reigning world champion Charlotte Consorti (FRA, F-One), they are both tied in points but Melissa with a slightly better top speed. In third then reigning world record holder Sjoukje Bredenkamp (RSA, Naish).

Racing continues until Sunday, fifth of April, with daily racing from 10:00 hours.

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Emmanuel Rondón 

Emmanuel Rondón and Kirsty Jones have won the Master Of The Ocean 2009, a surf, windsurf and kiteboard triathlon competition held in Cabarete, on the north coast of the Dominican Republic.

Rondón got the best overall score and won it for the second consecutive year. In each category, there were also winners. Winston Martinez was the best windsurfer, followed by Oscar de la Cruz, Nino Rodríguez and Samuel Pérez.

In the surfing discipline, Manuel Selman showed top skills defeating surfers like Pedro Fernández, Iván Herrera and Brandon Sanford. Finally, Luis Alberto, Ariel Corniel and Félix Antonio were the best kitesurfers in the Master of Ocean 2009.

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