and 1cy Yellow-legged Gull…
by Martin G
POSTSCRIPT: Now 2 first year Caspian Gulls on outer head at Flamborough (5:00 pm on 19th Sept.)
…and the first Northern ‘argentatus’ Herring Gull of the autumn. Fearful of being type caste 🙁 , I have nevertheless (with so few migrants around in last couple of days) taken to watching ‘other things’.
A near adult (sort of 3rd summer to 4th winter) type Herring Gull I saw yesterday (18th Sept) was notable for having dark/ blackish isolated large spots on the tertials. 3 obviously ‘spotted tertials’. A weak brown wash over the greater coverts and in flight a few tiny isolated black spots in the tail feathers. Such sub/near adults with isolated black tertial spots are worthy of closer scrutiny: viz American Herring Gull. I got RB onto the bird before it flew off. Views were poor, distant and mostly asleep lying down. Curious to follow it up and at least learn something I revisited the same field mid morning to drop straight on to a 1st winter Caspian Gull. RB soon got it before flying. Later on we picked out a first winter Yellow legged for added value and an adult (still moulting outer primaries) humongous looking Northern argentatus type, which Brett R. ad seen a couple of days earlier.
Gulls do have a way of providing birding entertainment when the more popular stuff is out-of- town.
Video of the Caspian Gull is >>> here <<<
1cy Caspian Gull, 19th Sept. Flamborough. Light poor and it’s raining. Not ideal for photography!
and the young Yellow-legged: