After two very disappointing post dawn trips down Guernsey’s west coast, when I failed to find more than a few Lesser or Great Black-backed Gulls, I got lucky today! The tide was better this morning, and on both L’Eree and Perelle there were decent flocks of LBBGs – in total around 200 birds. One of the first colour ringed birds seen was Blue YH05 – an Icelandic breeding bird, which used Guernsey’s west coast as a migration stop-over at this time of year in 2010. It is amazing how some of these gulls really are creatures of habit – even using the same migration stop-over locations! Not to be outshone by this exciting visitor…my own cr LBBGs soon began to appear…and I ended my session with 14 Guernsey and Alderney LBBGs recorded! The last cr LBBG seen, shortly before the flock on Perelle was flushed by a passing motorcycle, was a 1st winter bird – Red S:097 – a bird from a new project in SW England run by Mike Bailey.
As if this wasn’t enough excitement I also found two Great Black-backed Gulls from Bruce Taggart’s project running at St George’s Island, Looe, Cornwall, England – L:AJ8 (recorded in Guernsey on 31 October 2010 and 15 January 2011) and L:AS0 (a 1st winter bird recorded here for the first time).
Tim Earl also recorded a LBBG (Black SJ) at L’Eree on 15 September, which had been ringed in Bristol in 1994 by Peter Rock.
LBBG Blue YH05 from Iceland
GBBG Yellow 0.PP7 from Lihou, Guernsey
GBBG Yellow 0.PP7 in June 2011
Gulls on L'Eree Beach 16 September 2011And finally…the Polish colour ringed Black-headed Gull, which spent last autumn (and this autumn so far) in Guernsey - White TARM - was on L’Ancresse Common last evening – all in all a really outstanding 24 hours for recording cr gulls in Guernsey!