Monthly Archives: January 2012

Iceland Gull and its dark mark

Stubber’s Green, West Midlands 30.1.12

Went back to look for the candidate American Herring Gull. No luck, but great views of the Iceland Gull, reckoned to be a 4th winter (a returning bird) by the keenest local birders. That’s in spite of its brownish marking in wings and tail.

I have also been a little disquieted that when preening and sometime when perched I got the impression of some darker marks in outer primaries- along webs. Today I got pics that show darker pigmentation at least on the outer web of p9- on the left wing in this shot. Birding is always interesting ; ) !

Also saw 1 adult Caspian Gull and at the Chasewater roost, 1st winter Caspian Gull, two 1st winter Yellow-legged Gull, the Iceland Gull (again) and an adult Mediterranean Gull. No bad!

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Iceland and Caspian Gulls- together

Nice combo!

On the shoreline at Stubbers Green. Preening 3rd winter Iceland Gull (left) and adult Caspian Gull just along shoreline to its right. Not sure I have seen that before.

and the 3 adult Caspian Gulls

Here photos of the 3 different adults in the Stubbers area. I am pretty confident now I was fortunate to see all 3 on 26th Jan (big male in flight over the tip). Plenty to look out for in the area.

Number one: The BIG beefy one (long legs and little black bill marks). This one I understand has been regularly seen in the area.

Number two. Proper black bill band- lovely head and bill shape. A big one as well. Have only seen this one once.

Number three: smaller (female ?) with no black bill marks. Seen this one a couple of times

 

This is the big (male) in flight. Bird number one.

is it one or not?

American Herring Gull that is…

I will be back tomorrow for another look. I saw this 1st winter ‘Herring-type’ gull this afternoon at Stubber’s Green, West Midlands. I have seen a  fair few young argentatus Herring Gulls that made a good effort with various characters to look like a young American Herring Gull but not really seen one like this before though. This one comes much closer in a bunch of characters to American Herring Gull. I am not sure what I think about it and would like more views- but just letting anyone interested know. Here’s a few photos and videos to look though. I know all the arguments, pros and cons and some appreciation of the variation. I didn’t see the uppertail tail at all and would very much like to. Tomorrow might be interesting…  (at least there have definitely been 3 adult Caspian Gulls and a 3rd winter Iceland Gull there in the last couple of days).

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Wood Duck friends

In the news

I see the North American Wood Duck is in the news again with a male out in the wilds of western Ireland. Highly likely that some reach Britain and Ireland from N. America for a bunch of reasons. Watching a few Mallard in bright sunshine at Stubber’s Green yesterday reminded me that Mallard are an association species of Wood Duck- in case I find a Wood Duck in a Mallard flock, not to be put off!

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nearly grown up Iceland Gull

Stubbers Green, 27th Jan 2012

Another great couple of hours spent at this prime urban gulling sight. Enjoyed meeting Kevin Clements as we watched the returning Iceland Gull (now in its 3rd or 4th winter??) fly in. Meanwhile 2 adult Caspian Gulls performed well, one of them a different bird from yesterday, a well-known large male. I reckon then I really did see 3 adults yesterday- certainly there are 3 adult Caspian Gulls in the area. Fab! More on them coming, for now the Iceland  Gull (what age is it?):

Now planning some Gull Masterclasses, thank to Kevin, at Stubbers Green. SOON! Contact me if interested.

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2 Caspians + baby Yellow-legged

Stubber’s Green 26th  Jan 2012

I was nearly tempted to claim 3 adult Caspian Gulls today. I was at the urban gull mecca of Stubber’s Green in the West Midlands. Cold but good! I managed to dig out at least 2 adult Caspian Gulls, a lovely advanced moult Yellow-legged Gull (1st winter), which was my favourite bird of the day, and a scarily pale young Lesser Black-backed type.Yellow-legged Gull is very cool I think!

Dedicated to all those who have recently been in Gull Masterclass days:

Adult Caspian one:

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Adult Caspian two

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Adult Caspian (presumed no. one again later in day)

a quick burst of preening argentatus (Northern Herring Gull) to compare:

Caspian one and ? probably two? in flight over nearby tip

Number one:

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Number two

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First winter Yellow-legged Gull- an easy one!

 

young and pale and scary Lesser Black-backed type Gull

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