Sunday, 4 March 2012

Gull Bonanza

4th March - a very wet day, raining from morning until late afternoon. Some time after 4pm, the rain eased and I decided to get some air and visit the pit.

On arrival, there were obviously a lot of gulls on site and they were covering much of the spit.  Rubbish at estimating the flock size of these birds, but maybe 6-8,000 birds.  These comprised mainly Common Gulls and Black-headed Gulls, but there were probably 100-200 LWHG present this evening.

The spit turns white

There's an Iceland and Glaucous Gull in this shot!
Having had a quick scan of the gulls and not picked up anything of note, I noted a Dunlin running around on the near side of the spit.  I then started to scan the gulls again and noticed a very white Iceland Gull on the near spit, probably the closest point to me.  I moved to the viewpoint for a record shot and noted a pale eye and dark banded pink bill with a small pale tip - a 2w bird, but with relatively little grey in the mantle.

I texted the news out and almost immediately found a 1w Glaucous Gull on the spit in front of the island.  I took a poor record shot, as my camera doesn't like low light levels.  I think that this bird looks to have a slightly differently proportioned bill to the bird I saw last month and might well be a different individual.

The patience of my long suffering son had given up by this stage, so I did not have time to check the rest of the roost for Meds or anything else, though a 2w Yellow-legged Gull was reasonably close to the Iceland Gull and a male Shelduck was swimming amongst the gull rafts.

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