Report Guernsey Colour Ringed Gulls

Sightings of Guernsey colour ringed Gulls can be entered here for an instant life history, or sent to for a life history to be returned by e-mail to observers.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Norwegian LBBG Drops in at Chouet

The highlight of another very good gull colour ring recording session at Chouet landfill this morning was a Norwegian Lesser Black-backed Gull (Black JL1X) which joined the local birds very briefly. I suspect , as I type this several hours later, it may already be some distance up the continental coast driven by the desire to get back on its breeding territory. Ringed as an adult male on 20 April 2014 at Fredrikstad, Ostfold, Norway, Black JL1X was recorded in October 2013 at Quarteira Beach, Faro. Its ultimate wintering site currently remains unknown.
 Movements of LBBG Black JL1X
 Gulls at Chouet landfill

LBBGs at Chouet Landfill - all photos (c) PKV

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Welsh GBBG in Guernsey

Yesterday morning  there was a very nice assortment of gulls resting on on Chouet Beach after bathing in the sea. Amongst them was GBBG Yellow D:AT - one of 20 chicks ringed on 16 June 2013 on Denny Island, Monmouthshire, Wales - a small islet in the Bristol Channel. This is a new colour ringing project established in 2013 by the Goldcliff Ringing Group. This is the first GBBG ringed in Wales to be recorded in the Channel Islands
The tides have been excellent this week for checking Chouet beaches for gulls before work, and on most days I've recorded c 100-150 LBBGs each day, adding important data to our long-term gull studies.
Denny Island, Monmouthshire, Wales (c) Richard Clarke

 GBBG Yellow D:AT at Chouet Beach (c) PKV
 Gulls on Chouet Beach (c) PKV

Gulls at Chouet landfill Beach (c) PKV

Thursday, March 27, 2014

The Fun of Learning about our Gulls

One of the things we are trying to learn about gulls nesting in the Bailiwick of Guernsey, through our colour ringing programme, is fidelity (or otherwise) to natal sites. With the studies commencing in 2008 (LBBG) and 2009 (HG and GBBG) we are only now beginning to get the first clues from chicks ringed in those early years, as they approach maturity and make their first breeding attempts.
In regard to GBBGs we already have confirmed reports from Jean-Michel Sauvage of a metal-ringed chick from Burhou, Alderney in 2005 now nesting regularly in the town of Boulogne, Pas-de-Calais, France. We may now be on the cusp of receiving our second confirmed case of emigration for GBBGs with news that Yellow 0.AA6 (a chick ringed on Jethou in June 2010) is being regularly seen on, and in the vicinity of, Looe Island in Cornwall, where there is another significant colony of GBBGs which is being well studied through a colour ringing project being led by Bruce Taggart. The Guernsey GBBG may make a breeding attempt this year, or scout the colony ahead of next season.

Below is are photos of Yellow 0.AA6 when ringed as a chick, and then on Looe Island in May 2012 and again in March 2104.
 GBBG Yellow 0.AA6 as chick Jethou - 09 June 2010 (c) PKV

 GBBG Yellow 0.AA6 at Looe Island 03 May 2012 (c) Claire Lewis
GBBG Yellow 0.AA6 Looe Island 19 March 2014 (c) Sue Cornwall Seal Group

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Amidst the Hail and Sunshine...Lots of Gulls!

Several seasons unfolded in a couple of hours this morning at Chouet landfill with cold winter winds and heavy hail showers, followed a few minutes alter by warm spring sunshine! Around 240 gull colour ring reads were taken - c 160 LBBGs, 70 Herring Gulls and nine GBBGs.Several LBBGs were recorded for the first time this season, and there was a lot of courtship behaviour from the gulls - summer must be on the way!

Gulls at Chouet Landfill 22 March 2014 (c) PKV

Saturday, March 15, 2014

A Stunning Morning at Chouet Landfill

After the frustrations of foggy weather and poor visibility for the past 48 hours today dawned clear and bright. With high tide at 0600 the choice this morning was obvious - Chouet Landfill for a few hours...then a quick look at the landfill beach. The layout of the landfill today was just about perfect for observation. In two and half hours inside the landfill and 20 minutes at the beach afterwards I recorded almost 250 colour ringed gulls - the best session of the year so far! The majority were LBBGs (c 170), with c 60 Herring Gulls and 14 GBBGs. Regular LBBG Blue ACE (ringed at Gloucester, England) was seen for the first time this season today, and there was one English (Cornwall) and three French-ringed GBBGs present (all from Chausey Islands, Manche). All in all a truly marvellous gull watching session!

Gulls at Chouet Landfill and Chouet Landfill Beach (c) PKV