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.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Herring Gull in NW Iberia

It’s always special when I get a report of one of our Herring Gulls from Iberia. White 5CK9 clearly likes the north-west of the Peninsula. Ringed as a 3rd year+ female at Chouet Landfill in May 2011, this gull was seen in Sark the following summer. However, since then it has only been reported from Iberia in winter. The first observation was at Boca do Rio, A Coruna, Spain on 09 February 2013 (Juan Cabeza), with a further report at Aguda, Portugal on 24 January 2014 (Helder Vieira). The latest report came in on 24 November from Corrubedo, Ribeira, A Coruna, Spain (Ramsés Pérez).
Such long distance migrant Herring Gulls are very much in the minority of the Channel Islands’ birds.

Herring Gull W5CK9 in NW Spain (c) Ramsés Pérez

Another LBBG returns to the Canary Islands!

Only 24 hours after hearing about the return of LBBG B8AH8 to Gran Canaria, I was contacted by Xabier Remirez with news that B9V0 was also back at the same site! This gull had been ringed as an adult in May 2011 at Chouet Landfill, Guernsey. It was seen several times in Guernsey through the spring and summer in 2012, before being seen at Las Palmas Harbour, Gran Canaria in December of that year. There had been no further reports for almost two years, until Sunday 23 November, when the bird was back at Las Palmas. Only a minority of Channel Islands nesting LBBGs appear to be long distance migrants, but those that are show the same winter site fidelity as many of the birds that make the shorter migration to winter in Iberia.

LBBG Black 9V0 in Guernsey and in Gran Canaria (c) Xabier Remirez (top and bottom two) & PKV (the rest)

Sunday, November 23, 2014

LBBG Black 8AH8 Back in the Canary Islands

Yesterday I received news from Yeray Seminario that LBBG B8AH8 is now back at Las Palmas Harbour, Grand Canaria! This gull was ringed as an adult at Chouet Landfill, Guernsey in May 2012, and it was seen regularly in the summer, before being reported from Grand Canaria on 01 December that year by Francisco and Javier del Campo.  I've seen this gull may times in Guernsey in each of the following summers, but it hadn't been reported again from outside the islands until yesterday. This is only the third LBBG known to spend winters in the Canary Islands!
LBBG B8AH8 at Las Palmas Harbour 22 November 2014 (c) Yeray Seminario

Saturday, November 15, 2014

This may just be...As Good As It Gets!

On my first ever trip abroad reading gull colour rings (in January 2009 to the Algarve, Portugal) I found a single Guernsey-ringed bird - and was absolutely thrilled to have done so. It seemed to me like finding a needle in a haystack - something truly awe-inspiring. Since then I've been very fortunate to undertake ring reading trips in Morocco, Portugal, Spain and France, and the thrill of finding my birds abroad has never left me!
It was unimaginable to me when the pioneer gull ring readers Peter Rock and Harry Vercruijsse made trips to Portugal and came back with almost 100 sightings of Guernsey birds. In fact Peter established a record this October when he came back with 102 sightings...the first person ever to break the century mark.
I'm still in very pleasant shock from my recent two week trip to Portugal (Matosinhos to Sines) when I took 156 records of Guernsey and Alderney-ringed Lesser Black-backed Gulls. This included a simply staggering day at Eirol Landfill with Tim van Nus and Pedro Moreira when we observed 61 of our birds (amongst a record-breaking day for the site of c 140 gull colour ring reads). Of course this is only possible due to all the help on the ground (before and/or during my trip) from fellow gull enthusiasts (Peter Rock, Inocencio Oliveira, Paulo Faria, Malcolm Millais, Tim van Nus, Pedro Moreira and others).
Of course I also observed many gulls from other projects based in Northern and Western Europe and I hope to get all these records to the project leaders next week. For now  I should like to record my deep gratitude for everyone who helped to make this last trip totally awesome! This one really is going to be very hard to beat!!!
Gulls at Eirol Landfill

A Very Happy PKV - Maybe This Really is As Good as it Gets!

Guernsey-ringed Black 2.X0 at Eirol

A few White Storks to Add variety (but wait for the photos from Vil de Matos Landfill Next Week!)

Tim van Nus and Pedro Moreira who undertake very valuable gull observations at Eirol

Black 8V6 (another Guernsey bird)

LBBG Black 5CS7 another Alderney youngster!


Friday, November 14, 2014

More Wonderful Gull Sightings!

I've just returned from a two week gull ring reading tip to Northern and Western Portugal, hence the lack of blog postings recently. More of this fabulous trip shortly...but first things first...I'm catching up with gull reports which have come in over the past two weeks. Apologies to observers for the slight delay in replying...but I've almost caught up fully now!
There was a wonderful series of Herring Gulls from Western France, and Lesser Black-backed Gulls from France, Spain and Portugal, but amongst the batch were two "special" ones.
Firstly - another LBBG reported on 09 November by Ruth Garcia Gorria at Sidi Moussa-Walidia Saltpans, Doukkala-Abda, Morocco. This bird - Black 8AN4 - was ringed as an adult male in our garden in July 2012, and has a long history of sightings in Guernsey, as well as a few in Sark (where I think the gull nests).
The other is a Yellow-legged Gull (one of only a handful colour ringed in the Channel Islands), which was ringed at Chouet Landfill during our week of cannon netting with the North Thames Gull Group in May this year. It was a 3rd calendar year bird, and was seen on 07 November 2014 at Hendaye, Pyrenee-Atlantique, France by Alfredo Herrero. It would therefore seem that this immature michahellis was wandering north last may when trapped in Guernsey.

Yellow-legged Gull White 7JM0 at Chouet Landfill - 24 May 2014 (c) Vic Froome