West Beach Boardwalk makes a tern

The small-but-spirited Least Tern has done something the coronavirus couldn’t do: It’s shut down part of a city project.

Workers on the West Beach Boardwalk expansion between Veterans and Camellia avenues had to move to another part of the mile-long project after a Least Tern nest was found adjacent to a piece of earthmoving machinery. The terns, which often create a dozen or so colonies of nests along Coast beaches this time of year, have also established a colony near the work area.

 “We notified the U.S. Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, and we were able to work in other areas of the mile-long project,” said City Engineer Christy LeBatard, whose department is overseeing the $885,000 tidelands-financed project. “A representative of the Audubon Society is monitoring the birds and the work, and making sure that the birds are able to nest in relative peace.”

The project, which will see a new boardwalk from Veterans Avenue to Camellia Avenue, is still expected to be completed in time for Cruisin’ the Coast, LeBatard said.

The terns, which breed and nest on the beaches this time of year, are migratory birds that need to be taught by their parents to fish and then to migrate back to Central America and Mexico.

“We’re being told that the ones by the boardwalk are expected to move on by the end of June,” LeBatard said. “We don’t envision any delays in the project, and we ask the public to keep an eye out for the terns as they walk the beach. Areas are roped off with signage for the nesting areas, but birds can’t read and they may nest outside of a marked area.”
See photos from the work site

Today’s update: Numbers recap, openings on the horizon

The Mississippi State Department of Health today reports 136 new cases of the coronavirus throughout the state. On Saturday, 322 new cases were reported and on Sunday 172 new cases were reported. The department also reports seven new deaths in the past 24 hours, with two of those having occurred on May 5. Also, 17 deaths were reported on Saturday and 11 deaths reported on Sunday.

Also included in Today’s Be Prepared video report is talk about the next sectors to open this week.
Facebook: See today’s update
YouTube: See today’s update 
See the overall tracking chart
See the daily comparison chart
See the Harrison County 14-day chart
See Phase 1 of the casino opening guidelines
See the Mayor’s and Governor’s latest executive orders
See Opening Up Biloxi Again guidelines
See Opening Up America Again guidelines

News & notes: Weekly report, council, Dog Park

The week that was: Last week, the Fire Department answered 88 calls for service, including 55 medical emergencies and six fires; the Police Department handled 1,886 calls for service; the Community Development Department issued 64 building permits with a construction valuation of more than $1.3 million; and the Engineering Department continued to progress on projects throughout the city.  To see the reports covering last week, click here. 

City Council: The Biloxi City Council will hold its next scheduled meeting on Tuesday at Biloxi City Hall at 1:30 p.m. The meeting, open to city officials and only those directly related to items on the agenda, will be streamed live and recorded. The recording will be posted immediately following the meeting on the city’s YouTube Channel and on BTV. To see the agenda and supporting documents, click here.

Dog park: The Biloxi Dog Park on Popp’s Ferry Road will be closed on Tuesday and Wednesday so that Parks & Recreation crews can spray for ticks and fleas. The park will reopen on Thursday.  To see more about the city’s two dog parks, click here.