Report Guernsey Colour Ringed Gulls

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Friday, April 30, 2010

An unexpected visitor to Chouet - LBBG Black 0.R0

Although there has been a steady increase in the number of immature Lesser Black-backed Gulls at Chouet since mid-April, I did not expect any of the 1st summer birds to be local. Black 0.R0 proved me wrong today by returning to Chouet from its wintering grounds in Spain. This gull was ringed as a chick on Burhou, Alderney on 10 July 2009. It was first reported at Esmelle Beach, A Coruna, Spain on 31/08/09 (Paco Veiga) and 01/09/09 (Antonio Gutierrez), before being seen for most of February 2010 at Alcazar de San Juan Landfill Cuidad Real, Spain (Gabriel Martín). It was at Pinto Landfill, Madrid on 16/04/10 (Javier Marchamalo) before making the flight back to Guernsey.
LBBG Black 0.R0 at Chouet landfill - 30 April 10 - PKV

Black 0.R0 Chouet Landfill - PKV

LBBG Black 0.R0 Esmelle Beach, Spain 01/09/09 - Antonio Gutierrez

LBBG Black 0.R0 Alcazar de San Juan landfill, Cuidad Real, Spain 27/02/10 - Gabriel Martín

LBBG Black 0.R0 Pinto Landfill, Madrid, Spain 16/04/10 - Javier Marchamalo

In March and April 2010 I have had reports of 12 different colour ringed 1st summer LBBGs - all ringed on 09/10 July 2009 on Burhou, Alderney. Ten of these gulls have been seen in Spain (with one of these being recorded in the Algarve, Portugal as well). The other two birds have been wintering in north-west France (Maine-et-Loire (one) and Mayenne (one)).

It is most likely that a small minority of 1st summer LBBGs from Guernsey will do what Black 0.R0 has done and fly back as far north as their natal colony in its first summer. Most are expected to stay further south where they have wintered. is still very early days in my colour ringing we shall see!

LBBG Black 0.C7 has been wintering in north-west France - Cyril Maurer

Black 0.H9 as a chick on Burhou - July 09 - PKV

Black 0.H9 Pinto landfill, Spain - Delfín González

Black 0.K8 as a chick on Burhou - PKV

Black 0.K8 Asturias 04/09/09 - Bernardo Busto

Black 0.K8 Meiras Beach, A Coruna, Spain - 21/04/10 - Antonio Gutierrez

White 4.V5 Burhou 10 July 09 - PKV

White 4.V5 El Musel Harbour, Gijon, Asturias, Spain - Nacho Vega

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Another Norwegian-ringed Lesser Black-backed Gull at Chouet and a 21 year old LBBG mating!

A very nice surprise this morning was my 2nd Norwegian colour-ringed Lesser Black-backed Gull of the spring Blue J0LP. Again this bird was of the race intermedius  which is scarce on passage here in Guernsey. This bird was ringed as a chick at Nordre Katland, Farsund, Vest-Agder, Norway on 23/06/07 (Tor Oddvar Hansen). It was seen back at Ruana, Farsund, Vest-Agder on 05/06/09.
LBBG Blue J0LP Chouet Landfil - PKV

A total of 23 cr LBBGs was recorded this morning, including metal ring Jersey E 7781 (ringed by Jamie Hooper and Catherine Kinnersly on 10 July 1999 on one of the Sark colonies). It is now pairing with one of my cr birds - White 7S2.

LBBG Jersey E 7781 Chouet landfill - PKV

LBBG White 7S2 Chouet landfill - PKV

Another very nice record today was metal ring Jersey E4141, which I ringed as a chick on 10 July 1989 in one of the Sark colonies. I am very pleased to say that it is still going strong and is in fact a male as it was doing its bit today to make sure it raises more young - at 21 years old!

LBBG White 7.T3 Chouet landfill - PKV

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Another very nice session at Chouet landfill

With the beaches covered by the high tide early this morning I went to Chouet landfill, and enjoyed some very nice close encounters with Lesser Black-backed Gulls. Highlights included another new British-ringed LBBG - London FP77334
LBBG London FP77334 Chouet landfill - PKV
I also saw a tibia-ringed 2nd summer LBBG, but only managed a partial read of this ring. It is apparently a Dutch bird and I am hoping that Roland-Jan Buijs can help pin this bird down to a ringing site.

2nd summer tibia-ringed LBBG - Chouet landfill - PKV

I recorded 22 other ringed LBBGs, but none were new arrivals for the spring.

LBBG White 6S6 Chouet landfill - PKV

LBBG White 7S2 Chouet landfill - PKV

LBBG White 6.T9 Chouet landfill - PKV

LBBG White 2.U9 Chouet landfill - PKV

LBBG White 0.U4 Chouet landfill Beach - PKV

LBBG White 9.T7 Chouet Landfill Beach - PKV

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

High tide at Chouet

A lovely high tide at Chouet early this morning brought a moderate number of gulls close to the car, and 16 locally ringed Lesser Black-backed Gulls were recorded (none newly arrived).
Gulls at Chouet Landfill Beach - PKV

LBBG White 9.Z4 CLB - PKV

LBBG Jersey D 3964 Chouet Beach - PKV

Herring Gull with crossed mandibles - CLB - PKV

Yellow-legged Gull - CLB - PKV

GBBG Yellow 0J8 CLB - PKV

Sunday, April 25, 2010

And today a Norwegian cr Lesser Black-backed Gull

A Norwegian-ringed Lesser Black-backed Gull on Chouet Beach early this morning was the undisputed highlight of the day. Black J3H4 was ringed as a chick on 11 July 2007 on the island of Hummerholmen, Lindesnes, Vest-Agder, Norway (Thomas Bentsen). Interestingly this bird is of the race Larus fuscus intermedius (which is scarce on passage in the Channel Islands).  This is only my 2nd Norwegian-ringed Lesser Black-backed Gull seen in Guernsey (the other being on 28 March 2009).

LBBG Black J3H4 Chouet Beach - PKV
There was also a red ringed (yellow code) 2nd summer Lesser Black-backed Gull on Chouet this morning, but it was very distant in windy conditions, and unfortunately the gull flock was disturbed by two dogs before I could secure the code. With Chouet landfill closed today (Sunday) the gulls did not settle in the area and dispersed widely. I could not relocate the gull.

Our efforts to ring a few gulls in our garden were also thwarted by a combination of factors today.

Paul Hillion, on of the best nature photographers in Guernsey, sent me a very nice photo today of locally ringed Herring Gull White 4.PP6 at La Claire Mare Nature Reserve on Guernsey's west coast.
Herring Gull 4.PP6 La Claire Mare 24 April 10 - Paul Hillion
White 4.PP6 - Paul Hillion

Saturday, April 24, 2010

And I thought the spring gull migration was over!

With no new colour ringed Guernsey Lesser Black-backed Gulls arriving now for three days, and having seen so much nesting activity on Herm yesterday, I was just beginning to think that the spring migration was over (at least for adults) when a bird from the Ribble Estuary, Lancashire, England turned up on Chouet Landfill Beach this morning - Black R5NY (David Sowter).

LBBG Black R5NY - Chouet Landfill Beach - PKV

The other highlight today was my second sighting of this spring of LBBG Jersey E 5582, which I originally ringed on 30 June 1993 on one of the Sark colonies.

LBBG Jersey E 5582 - Chouet landfill - PKV

Friday, April 23, 2010

First seabird trip to Herm

Today Catherine and I went over to Herm, with Catherine's parents, to take an early look at the gulls nesting on the cliffs. Many of the Herring Gulls were actually sitting on their nests, while some Lesser Black-backed Gulls were also on nests. We did not disturb any of the birds, so could not see if they had complete clutches of eggs yet.
Jethou and Crevichon from Herm - PKV

Jethou and Grande Fauconniere from Herm - PKV

Gulls on cliff, Herm - PKV

Herring Gull on nest Herm - PKV

Herring Gull on nest - Herm - PKV

Le Plat Hommet - PKV

Shell Beach, Herm - PKV

LBBGs mating - PKV

There were a few migrants on Herm including 10 Northern Wheatears, 1 male Ring Ouzel, 20 Common Chiffchaffs, four Greater Whitethroats and 20+ Barn Swallows.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

..and another of Gilles' Great Black-backed Gull's from Seine-Maritime

Amazingly another of Gilles Le Guillou's Great Black-backed Gulls was on Chouet Beach this morning. This was Blue 67C, which must have been ringed as a chick in June 2008.This is now the 25th bird from Gilles' project which I've seen in Guernsey over the past two years.

GBBG Blue 67 Chouet Beach - PKV

None of the 22 colour-ringed Lesser Black-backed Gulls recorded today were new arrivals for the spring.

Of considerable interest to me are some reports coming in now from Spain of my 1st summer Lesser Black-backed Gulls ringed on Burhou last July. Over the next couple of days I will post a blog on this subject.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Another Great Black-backed Gull from France

Today's highlight at Chouet landfill Beach was the sighting of Great Black-backed Gull Black 01E - a chick ringed in Seine-Maritime, France in the summer of 2009 (Gilles Le Guillou). This is the 24th Great Black-backed Gull recorded in Guernsey from Gilles' project based at Le Havre.

GBBG Black 01E Chouet Landfill Beach - PKV

I was lucky to be able to scan a good flock of gulls on Chouet Beach before the dog walkers arrived.

Chouet Beach - PKV

GBBG Yellow 0M3 ringed as a chick on Lihou, Guernsey 24/06/09 but not previously recorded - Chouet Beach - PKV

LBBG White 0.T2 Chouet Beach - PKV

LBBG White 2.T1 Chouet Landfill Beach - I hope to catch this gull again this summer to see what has happened to its tongue (which is now protruding through a hole in the base of the lower mandible) - PKV

LBBG White 5.Z6 CLB - PKV

LBBG White 5.T9 CLB -PKV

LBBG White 1.U8 CLB - PKV

LBBG White 2.Z6 CLB - PKV

LBBG White 7.T1 CLB - PKV

LBBG White 7.T3 CLB - PKV

LBBG White 7.T7 CLB - PKV

LBBG White 9.Z4 CLB - PKV