Thursday, March 25, 2010

Richmond bank

A 2nd summer

Richmond bank,

Not your average iceland gull. Its bill is actually longer than the 2 young herring gulls behind it although the bill is slightly slimmer. It does not seem to have the gentle face of an iceland gull either but its probably just a big iceland gull with a long bill looking a bit grumpy.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Richmond Bank,
My first chiffchaff of the spring was in the alders on the path to the bank today.A sunny start but it soon became overcast which is ideal. No big numbers of gulls today and they were very flighty with the local buzzards harassing them. A beautiful 2nd winter glaucous gull was seen briefly on the sandbank. A frosty looking bird with some grey feathers on the mantle and coverts. There has previously been a couple of reports this winter of a 2nd winter glaucous gull so it was nice to finally see it.
A 1st w 'caspian like' gull was sat on the sand most of the time I watched it and when it did get up it had an injury to its leg and was limping badly.I initially thought this was a caspian gull but now I think this is a herring gull. Lots of pale 1stw herring gulls about at the moment doing a good job imitating caspian gulls.
A 1stw,2ndw, 3rdw and 2 adult yellow legged gulls today.

adult yellow legged gull

A very strange bill on this young gull.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Richmond bank,
A very wet morning but there was still plenty to see at the bank today. A male wheatear was still on the path and a stonechat was in the scrub. A juv glaucous gull today was a different bird from the glaucous gull I had last Wednesday and on several previous occasions. Todays bird was larger, bigger billed , and a darker colour than the recent glaucous gull. After I had left the 2 Glaucs were seen on the bank at the same time. An adult and 2 1sts yellow legged gulls today also.

Todays glaucous gull

Todays Glaucous gull

Wednesdays Glaucous gull

1sts yl gull

1sts ylgull
2nd summer Argentatus herring gull

I was driving along Cronton Rd when I noticed a very pale raptor perched in a dead tree. So with a handbrake turn ,I turned the van around with thoughts of osprey or rough legged buzzard flying around my head. I managed to get some photos of a very pale buzzard sp. but no feathers on the tarsi and no dark terminal tail band confirmed it as a common buzzard. A strikingly white underwing, white streaks on the coverts and mantle, and a partial white head make this a very beautiful bird.

Friday, March 19, 2010

1stw common gull
1stw common gull

Richmond bank,

3 very smart male wheatears greeted me on the path to the bank this warm overcast afternoon. I watched these chats as they fed actively, hungry no doubt from the epic journey they had just undertaken. Just lovely bold birds and great to see them back. 2 male stonechats were in the scrub nearby and 3 sand martins flew through also. The regular juv glaucous gull was seen in flight today. A crow with white primaries and some white coverts was with the local corvid flock.

adult lesser black backs

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Prescot reservoirs

The first true migrants in the shape of 3 sand martins were over no 4 res today. 6 snipe were still about and a pair of stonechats in the ranch were new in. An adult yellow legged gull was amongst the lesser black backed gulls. 17 oystercatchers and a handful of lappies were on the causeway. 12 goldeneye, a pair of gadwalls, a pair of shellduck,10 tufties and 4 great crested grebes also.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Richmond bank,

A mistle thrush was in full song as I arrived at the bank today and a smart male stonechat perched on a small hawthorn was a new arrival. My luck was in this morning and after only 10 minutes scanning through the gulls I had bagged a juv glaucous gull and a beautiful 1stw winter caspian gull. The low sun made viewing difficult early on but the clouds soon crept in to take away the glare.
The 1st winter caspian gull was seen throughout the morning on 3 different occasions, right up to when the tide covered the bank at 12. 30pm . It was an aggressive individual and was seen attacking nearby gulls with its wings raised in the classic albatross posture. It was also seen long calling but I could not hear it as it was distant and very breezy. A white underwing was seen as it raised its wings. This is obviously a different bird from the one Gavin had on Saturday as it has no ring on its leg.
The juv Glaucous gull was only seen briefly before it flew across the river towards the tip. 2 1stw yellow legged gulls also today.

1st winter caspian gull into the sun

1st winter caspian gull

A rather small elegant 1st winter lesser black backed gull was interesting. A huge 1st winter herring gull eyes it up.

juv glaucous gull

Caspian gull the movie

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Richmond bank,

The history of an adult lesser black backed gull seen on 27 feb at richmond bank with a red darvic ring 6hf

Recapture History
Ring Age/ Capture
number Type Date Init Details
Lesser Black-backed Gull
FP63556 N 1 27/06/02 FLAT HOLM ISLAND, Cardiff
S 2 Sighted (R) 30/09/04 JDS GLOUCESTER LAND FILL SITE, Gloucestershire (79 km, NE, 2 yrs
S 2 Sighted (R) 28/04/05 JDS GLOUCESTER LAND FILL SITE, Gloucestershire (79 km, NE, 2 yrs
S 2 Sighted (R) 30/08/05 JDS GLOUCESTER LAND FILL SITE, Gloucestershire (79 km, NE, 3 yrs
S 2 Sighted (R) 05/09/05 JDS GLOUCESTER LAND FILL SITE, Gloucestershire (79 km, NE, 3 yrs
S 2 Sighted (R) 16/10/05 RC CANNOCK, Staffordshire (163 km, NNE, 3 yrs 111days)
S 2 Sighted (NR) 07/11/05 AD FRANKLEY RES WEST MID, Worcestershire (140 km, NNE, 3 yrs
S 2 Sighted (NR) 09/11/05 AD FRANKLEY RES WEST MID, Worcestershire (140 km, NNE, 3 yrs
S 2 Sighted (R) 15/11/05 JDS STOKE ORCHARD LANDFILL, Gloucestershire (94 km, NE, 3 yrs
S 2 Sighted (R) 17/11/05 PR STOKE ORCHARD LANDFILL, Gloucestershire (94 km, NE, 3 yrs
S 2 Sighted (NR) 01/03/10 TV WARRINGTON, Cheshire (229 km, N, 7 yrs 247days)

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Richmond bank,

A beautiful 1stw caspian gull was found by GT today and amazingly it was a colour ringed bird with a yellow darvic ring. What wasn't amazing was that he found it an hour after I had left for home....OUCH! Well done Gavin on this excellent find.
Earlier in the day 3 adult and a 1stw yellow legged gull plus an adult med.
A pair of grey partridge were flushed and long tailed tits were nest building in the brambles.

A 1stw yellow legged gull

An adult yellow legged gull

A dark eyed argentatus herring gull

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Richmond bank,
A beautiful pair of Med gulls in full summer plumage, displaying and calling on richmond bank was a sure sign of spring on this mild afternoon. No white wingers today. An interesting 1st winter/2nd cal year gull showed well.
3 adult yellow legged gulls also.

Some inner coverts have been replaced on this 1st winter gull.

Dark tail band just visible as it took flight

An unusual stance from this great black backed gull.