Wednesday, 27 June 2012

More Gulls....

26th June - a warm and sunny morning for once!  On arrival, 2 Oystercatchers were immediately obvious on the end of the near spit, but shortly later, a third bird flew in.  The male took a dislike to this new arrival and chased it off.  LRPs have built in recent days, with 7 adults reported over the weekend - presumably failed breeders.  Today there were still lots around the edge, but I was never sure that I had seen more than 5 - I wouldn't be surprised if there were more though.  An adult Little Egret complete with head plume was fishing on the back of the spit and 2 Hobbies flew through.

With little else to look at, once again my attention was drawn to the gull flock.  I eventually picked out 4 Yellow-legs - 3 of these were birds I had seen previously - an adult, a 2nd summer with bleached coverts and a single replaced grey central greater covert (this bird usually sits on its own in front of the island) and a 2nd summer with streaking around the eye.  The fourth bird was a new 2nd summer - a large male with a long bill, a black sub terminal band mainly on the upper mandible and long legs which were just beginning to acquire some yellow and still looked pale pink in some angles.  It looked taller and bigger than most of the birds around it.  I took a record shot at distance as it was in the usual gull spot on the back of the spit.

Doesn't look quite so big in the water
There were also 3 colour-ringed birds, none of which I could read: the usual white-ringed 2cy LBB Gull; a white-ringed adult Herring Gull and an orange/red-ringed 2cy Herring Gull.

Fortunately, when Dave P visited in the afternoon, the gulls were flushed from their usual spot and landed on the near spit.  This enabled him to get some better shots of the YL Gulls described above and also read 2 of the darvic rings.  His shots are featured below:

The adult bird

2nd summer with streaky eye, plus A7WD LBB Gull
The 2cy LBB Gull had a white ring with black A7WD and the adult Herring Gull had a white ring with black A6VH.  Both these birds are from a scheme in East Sussex that releases injured birds from the RSPCA and I await details - Thanks Dave!

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