Sorry I’ve not updated very much for a while – hopefully I’ve got a few things coming up of interest to mention!
The other night I had a trip up to Redmires with my fellow birder Andy, to have a squint through the gulls again this time hoping for the adult Caspian that had been seen the previous evening. It has been a horrible rainy day, but somehow this passed and it became a very pleasant evening, and the gulls were between the reservoirs in good numbers, although many stayed in the fields until dusk.
Five yellow-legged gulls were present – two adults, two second winters and one first winter – along with a few common gulls and a single herring gull, all nestling among the usual flock of lesser black-backs. Up there too was SBSG chairman Dave Wood, who beckoned us over to get on to a bird he’d found lurking among the flock – a probable juv/1st winter Caspian gull. Sure enough it was one weird looking thing – a pale head, a freakishly long, black bill with a slight droop and no obvious gonys angle, a small head giving a “nosey” look combined with the large bill, a big-chested look, and long,very dark primaries, with dark, pale-edged tertials. Not the pristine adult we were looking for, but an interesting bird to see, and well done to Dave for picking it out!
The large gathering of gulls from the fields finally drifted onto the reservoirs just as it got too dark to give them a good squint, so who knows what was lurking among them!
Also around were 35 teal, a single crossbill, 10 siskin, 2 kestrels, 9 swallows, a calling tawny owl and a couple of chuckling red grouse.
If you’re wondering how my lunchtime year list thingies going… well a mixture of busy lunch hours, bad weather, and non-playing birds mean I’ve only managed to add great tit to it! Ah well, the winter’s nearly here… something interesting will crop up soon.