Thursday, 1 October 2020

Venus Pool - Caspian Gull!!!

A few more words than normal, this was a special gull to round off a great session at VP!

Taking a break from the GWE, I could see the incoming large Gull flock was mostly Lesser Black-backed Gulls, now mingling with the local Black-heads. There was one individual gul however standing out from the moment I started scanning them as it strode purposefully or should I say strutted amongst the flock... 

There he is, nicely on a line the Great White Egret! Herring Gull type but standing tall on gangly pale pink legs...

Often a pointer of something interesting, a gull your eyes instantly pick out of the pack!

Zooming in, more features: head shape, long almost parallel bill. It look good for adult Caspian Gull!!

The only missing feature was the primary wingtips which on this Gull were conspicuous by the absence of outermost feathers! I must have spent close on an hour trying to get a decent wing-stretch or two or preen to get a glimpse? I had now been joined by John Martin, and we both agreed, it was looking good for Caspian but we were hampered by the bright sunshine!  Eventually, I've never been so pleased to see a cloud roll over, life became a bit easier! The following images were sorted during the evening and sent to John and Tom Lowe to pore over!

The upperwing distribution of black on the wing tip, including a complete black band across P5 - another feature looking good for Caspian!

And then the clincher pic. With the this angle you can see the three emerging outer primaries, each showing the correct pattern for Caspian!

Tom chose this one to weave his magic on his mobile phone (see below)! Every picture tells a story... The long white tip to P10 and the tip of whitish tongues on the underside of P9 and P8 visible...

There you go, courtesy of the Gull wizard himself! Thanks Tom!

It was a Patch tick for me, in fact a Patch tick for anyone. A new bird for the Venus Pool Reserve list!

To complete the story, it's also the same Gull that Tom found from his garden a few days ago (29th September) so it looks like it's hanging around! Keep your eyes peeled folks!

Oh and if you want something to pass the rainy weekend away, type 'Caspian Gull' in the search box top LHS of the top of the blog header...