Mersey Birders

Birding the North West

Latest Gull Sightings in North-West

February 2010


Lancashire and Merseyside

4 Ad Med Gulls (2 partial Summer, 1 Green darvic ringed prob from Hamburg Germany), 2ndw Yellow-legged Gull Seaforth NR (permit only).

5 Ad Med Gulls y'day at Southport Beach.

Ad Med Gull at Skerton Bridge Lancaster.

2 Ad Med Gulls at
Heysham Harbour.

5 Ad Little Gulls off Formby Point

Cheshire and Wirral

2ndw Med Gull at Budworth Mere.

Gtr Mancs

Ad Yellow-legged Gull and Ad Med Gull at Audenshaw Resr.


Cheshire and Wirral

2ndw and 1stw Iceland Gulls at Arpley Tip and 3 Ad Med Gulls, 6 Ad Yellow-legged Gull (no access to tip).

Gtr Mancs

2ndw Yellow-legged Gull and Common Scoter at Audenshaw Resr.


Lancashire and Merseyside

2 Ad Med Gulls at Heysham Harbour.

Gtr Mancs

2ndw Yellow-legged Gull at Audenshaw Resr and Ad Med Gull.


Lancashire and Merseyside

Ad Ring-billed Gull at Prescot Resr (permit only).

2 Ad Med Gulls at Heysham Harbour.

Cheshire and Wirral

2ndw + Juv Iceland Gulls at Richmond Bank on River Mersey, 12 Yellow-legged Gulls.

Ad Med Gull New Brighton marine lake.


Lancashire and Merseyside

2 Adw Med Gulls at Seaforth NR (permit only).

2ndw Med Gull off Starr Gate Blackpool, Ad Med Gull at Morecambe at Teal bay.

Ad Med Gull at Skerton Lancaster.

Cheshire and Wirral

Juv Iceland Gull and 1stw Caspian Gull at Richmond Bank.

Adw Med Gull off Leasowe on Sea wall.

Gtr Mancs

Ad Med Gull at Audenshaw Resr.

Ad Med Gull at Pennington Flash CP.


Lancashire and Merseyside

Ad Med Gull at Greyhound Bridge on River Lune.

2 Ad Med Gulls at Heysham Harbour.

Gtr Mancs

2ndw Yellow-legged Gull at Audenshaw Resr.


Lancashire and Merseyside

3 Ad Med Gulls at Downholland Moss at Worrall House Farm.


Lancashire and Merseyside

5 Ad Yellow-legged Gulls and 4 Ad Med Gulls at Seaforth NR (permit only).

Med Gull at Downholland Moss.

2 Med Gulls Heysham Harbour.

Cheshire and Wirral

Ad Med Gull at Leasowe Lighthouse.


Lancashire and Merseyside

3 Ad Med Gulls at Heysham Harbour.

Ad Med Gull at Martin Mere WWT.

Ad Med Gull at Fishmoor Res.

2 Ad Med Gulls at Downholland Moss by Worrall House Farm.

Cheshire and Wirral

Ad Yellow-legged Gull at Sandbach Flash.

Glaucous Gull on sandbank off Wigg Island River Mersey


Lancashire and Merseyside

Ad Med Gull at Red Nab, Ad Med Gull Old Fisher's roof, Heysham Harbour.

1stw Med Gull at Fishmoor Resr.

Ad Med Gull at Skerton Weir on River Lune.

Cheshire and Wirral

2ndw Iceland Gull at Moore NR, 2 Ad Med Gulls and Ad Yellow-legged Gull.

2ndw Glaucous Gull reported at Richmond Bank also Ad Caspian Gull.,

1stw Med Gull at New Brighton on grass near island


Ad Med Gull at Rhyl on River Clywd.


Cheshire and Wirral

Ad Med Gull at Nantwich flew over Barony Rd + Weaver Rd.

Gtr Mancs

Ad + 2ndw Yellow-legged Gulls at Audenshaw Resr.


Lancashire and Merseyside

Ad Med Gull at Downholland Moss.

Ad Med Gull at Martin Mere WWT.

5 Ad Med Gulls at Heysham Harbour, Ad Med Gull at Morecambe by town hall, ad Med at Lancaster by Greyhound Bridge.


Lancashire and Merseyside

Ad Med Gull at Downholland Moss.

Cheshire and Wirral

2ndw Iceland Gull at Moore NR


Lancashire and Merseyside

2 Ad Med Gulls at Downholland Moss by Worral House farm.

Ad Med Gull at Knott End.

Adw Med Gull at Seaforth NR (permit only).

Cheshire and Wirral

Adw + 1stw Med Gull at New Brighton on Harrison Dr.


Lancashire and Merseyside

Ad Med Gull at Knott End.


Lancashire and Merseyside

2ndw Med Gull at Brockholes Quarry LWT.

Cheshire and Wirral

Ad Med Gull Budworth Mere.


Lancashire and Merseyside

Ad Med Gull at Knott End.

Adw + 2ndw + 1stw Med Gull at Fishmoor Resr Blackburn.

Cheshire and Wirral

Probable 1stw Caspian Gull at Gowy Meadows Landfill.

1stw Caspian Gull at Richmond Bank on River Mersey.

4 Adw Med Gulls at Moore NR on Birchwood Pool, and Ad Yellow-legged Gull.


Lancashire and Merseyside

Ad Med Gull at Heysham Harbour.

1stw Med Gull at Fishmoor Resr Blackburn.

Ad Med Gull at Myserscough quarry.

Cheshire and Wirral

Adw Med Gull at Red Rocks, 1 Adw at New Brighton.


Lancashire and Merseyside

2 Adw Med Gulls at Heysham Harbour.

Adw Med Gull, Ad + 4thw Yellow-legged Gulls at Seaforth NR (permit only).

Ad Med Gull at Morecambe.

Cheshire and Wirral

Med Gull at New Brighton marina.


Cheshire and Wirral

2 Med Gulls at New Brighton Marina.

Lancashire and Merseyside

Ad Med Gull at Crosby Marina.


Lancashire and Merseyside

Ad Ring-billed Gull at Seaforth NR (permit only) again at 14.15, also 4 Ad Yellow-legged Gulls and 2 Ad Med Gulls.

January 2010


Cheshire and Wirral

Ad Iceland Gull at Arpley Tip viewed from Birchwood Pool Moore NR, 2 Adw Yellow-legged Gulls and 4 Ad Med Gulls.


Ad Bonaparte's Gull at Lligwy Bay still.


Lancashire and Merseyside

Adw Med Gull at Downholland Moss.


Lancashire and Merseyside

1stw Yellow-legged Gull and 3 Adw Med Gulls at Seaforth NR (permit only.


Ad Bonaparte's Gull at Lligwy Bay.


Med Gull Ad at Llansanffraid glan Conwy.


Lancashire and Merseyside

Adw Med Gull at Blackburn Coronation Park.

Cheshire and Wirral

Ad Med Gull at Gilroy Nature Park.

4 Adw, 2 2ndw, 4 1stw Yellow-legged Gulls, 2 1stw + 3 Adw Med Gulls at Moore/Arpley Tip.

Adw Med Gull at New brighton Marine lake, and one at Wallasey Central Park.


Ad Bonaparte's Gull at Traeth Lligwy at City Dulas on beach.


Lancashire and Merseyside

Adw Med Gull and 10 Scaup at Seaforth NR (permit only) no sign of Ring-billed Gull.

Ad + 1stw Med Gull at Fishmoor Resr near Blackburn.

Cheshire and Wirral

1stw Caspian Gull and 4 Yellow-legged Gulls at Moore NR.

Juv Iceland and Juv Glaucous Gulls at Gowy Meadows near landfill site.


Cheshire and Wirral

Juv Iceland Gull again at Sandbach Flash on Pumphouse Flash.

Med Gull at New Brighton Marine lake.

4 Ad + 1 1stw Yellow-legged Gulls at Moore NR.

Juv Iceland Gull at Gowy landfill site, 1 Ad + 1 1stw Yellow-legged Gulls.


Ad Bonaparte's Gull at Traeth Lligwy at City Dulas on beach.


Ad Med Gull Knott End.


Cheshire and Wirral

Ad and 2ndw Iceland Gull at Sandbach Flash on Pumphouse Flash.


Lancashire and Merseyside

Adw Ring-billed Gull Seaforth NR again at 15.15, 1 Adw Med Gull and 1 Adw Yellow-legged Gull. (permit only).

Adw Med Gull Seaforth NR 18th Jan 2010


Ad Bonaparte's Gull at Lligwy Bay again at 15.15.


Lancashire and Merseyside

Adw Ring-billed Gull at Seaforth NR again at 13.22 (permit only), 1 3rdw Yellow-legged Gull and 6 Adw Med Gulls.

1stw Caspian Gull at Prescot Resr y'day (permit only).

Cheshire and Wirral

Ad Yellow-legged Gull at Gowy CWT.


Ad Bonaparte's Gull at Lligwy Bay again late afternoon.


Lancashire and Merseyside

Adw Ring-billed Gull at Seaforth NR again at 13.25 (permit only), also 2 Adw Med Gull.

Adw Ring-billed Gull Seaforth NR Merseyside 16th Jan

52 Little Gulls flew past Rossall Point Fleetwood.

Cheshire and Wirral

Ad Iceland Gull at Sandbach Flash.


Ad Bonaparte's Gull at Lligwy Bay on beach.


2 Little Gulls at Criccieth shore


Isle of Man

Juv/2ndw Iceland Gull at Peel on beach.


Ad Bonaparte's Gull at Lligwy Bay and then at Traeth Dulas on beach.

Gtr Mancs

2ndw Yellow-legged Gull at Audenshaw Resr.

Lancashire and Merseyside

2 Adw Med Gull at Heysham Harbour.

Cheshire and Wirral

Juv/2ndw Iceland Gull at Moore NR on bank of Arpley Tip, Y'day and 2 Adw Med Gulls.



Ad Bonaparte's Gull at Lligwy Bay at 15.30.

2ndw Med Gull on Beddmanarch Bay.

Lancashire and Merseyside

Adw Med Gull at Pilling lane at Preesall Sands.

Juv Glaucous Gull at Prescot Resr and adw Med Gull (permit only).

2ndw Med Gull at Fishmoor Resr near Blackburn.


Cheshire and Wirral

2ndw Iceland Gull at Moore NR on bank of Arpley Tip.


Lancashire and Merseyside

2 Adw Med Gulls at Heysham Harbour.

Adw Med Gull at Lancaster on River Lune.


Lancashire and Merseyside

Adw Ring-billed Gull again at Seaforth NR (permit only), also 3 Adw Med Gulls and 2 Adw + 1 1stw Yellow-legged Gulls.

Gtr Mancs

Adw Yellow-legged Gull at Scotsman's Flash.

Cheshire and Wirral

Juv Glaucous Gull at Sandbach Flash.


Lancashire and Merseyside

1stw Med Gull at Fishmoor Resr near Blackburn.

Gull News 18th February 2010

There was no hint of any late-winter improvement in numbers of white-winged gulls. A grand total of 18 Iceland Gulls and just 16 Glaucous Gulls were recorded, but an adult Kumlien's Gull was found at Killybegs (Co. Donegal) on 15th. Caspian Gulls too featured less frequently than in previous weeks; only 18 or so were noted, but these included two different birds, on consecutive days, for Seaforth (Merseyside) — a first-winter on 12th and an adult on 13th. Two second-winters were at Chasewater (Staffordshire) on 13th, two first-winters were at Appleford (Oxfordshire) on 15th and a couple of birds were in Northamptonshire during the week. A third-winter cachinnans was seen at Hayling Island (Hampshire) and then East Head (East Sussex) on 14th.

In Essex, two adult Ring-billed Gulls have been seen "recently" on the tip at Pitsea (no public access there sadly), while at Southend-on-Sea "Rossi" the Ring-bill was still in place for another week. An adult Ring-billed Gull was at Copperhouse Creek (Cornwall) on 11th (eeee, just like the old days!) and other grown-ups were still in Hampshire and Argyll. In Ireland, at least 12 birds were seen, with three in Donegal and two each for Derry, Sligo, Galway and Limerick, and one in Antrim.

Gull News 11th February 2010

In County Cork, the adult Bonaparte's Gull was still at Baltimore on 4th–5th. The rather average winter for white-winged gulls showed little sign of improving: only 17 Iceland Gulls and 22 Glaucous Gulls were recorded this week, with a couple of each (at least) for Staffordshire.

Three Caspian Gulls were at Albert village lake (Leicestershire) on 6th, with two each for London and Oxfordshire (out of a figure for the week of 17). A first-winter was again noted at Richmond Bank (Cheshire).

In Pembrokeshire, an adult Ring-billed Gull was back for its fourth February in a row at Llys-y-Fran Reservoir on 6th (it has actually been visiting for five years, but was only seen in the January of 2006). Elsewhere, Scotland scored two (at Oban and Strathclyde Loch) and England two (in Hampshire and Essex) while Ireland clocked up at least 14, with four or five in Cork, three together in Galway (at Nimmo's Pier — with another alongside the Thayer's Gull at Cleggan), and singles in Antrim, Wicklow, Kerry, Sligo, Mayo (a second-winter near Crossmolina) and Donegal.

Gull News 4th February 2010

One of the finds of the week was most certainly the adult Bonaparte's Gull that spent 90 minutes or so off the breakwater at South Gare (Cleveland), only the third record for the county (following accepted records in 1977 and 2006). Another new Bonaparte's Gull was at Baltimore (Co. Cork) on 1st–3rd, while on Anglesey the adult Bonaparte's Gull was still coming into Lligwy Bay until 30th. In Ireland, the adult American Herring Gull was seen again at Nimmo's Pier (Co. Galway) on 28th.

Some 25 Iceland Gulls were recorded this week, including three birds at Peterhead (Aberdeenshire) on 31st and three or four birds around Orkney. Glaucous Gulls nudged past their white-winged counterparts with at least 28 birds, including three different birds in Staffordshire and two each for Kent, Cleveland and Aberdeenshire (both birds at Loch of Strathbeg on 29th).

Caspian Gulls mustered some 25 birds, including up to five in the West Midlands (three at Highfield South tip near Walsall on 30th), another five or six birds around London (including three at Rainham Marshes on 3rd) and two first-winters together at Aldeby tip (Norfolk) on 1st. Further first-winters were found at Richmond Bank (Cheshire) on 29th and Sutton Bridge (Lincolnshire) on 2nd, with Cheshire's second of the week, an adult, also taking a bow at Richmond Bank, this one on 3rd.

Ireland triumphed handsomely this week with Ring-billed Gull numbers, an 18–4 win over Britain, helped hugely by nine in County Cork on 31st (four at Great Island, four more at Rosscarbery and one at Ballydehob — all bar one an adult). Three adults were around Nimmo's Pier, two were around Limerick City and further adults were in Antrim, Kerry and Sligo. A second-winter Ring-billed Gull was found at Killybegs (Co. Donegal) on 30th (perhaps the same bird that has spent time in the county town?).

Gull News 28th Jan 2010

Winter gulls often spark controversy, and the last month or two has been running pretty true to form. The beautiful, beefy hybrid (with a whiff of Glaucous-winged Gull about it) around Lissadell in County Sligo was the first bird of the 2009/10 gulling season to draw comment as to its identity (if not much of a crowd).

Now in January comes the second Irish larid star of the period, the cause of much research for the finder (and, for four days, sole observer). His tenacity was amply rewarded as the quarry's true identity began to be unravelled in the ever-improving west-coast weather: not another teasing hybrid or a newly arrived Juv American Herring Gull, this was Ireland's seventh Thayer's Gull — and a deep, dark beauty it was too.

The stormy taxonomic waters that Thayer's Gull has charted over almost 100 years (since it was first described in 1915) are well documented and the taxon still draws much comment. Where it matters most, at the moment, is Ireland; and there, the IRBC recognise Thayer's Gull at specific status level, so eventual acceptance of the Galway bird will see it become the seventh record of this hugely entertaining species.

Ireland's first accepted record was the juvenile found at Cork City Dump in February 1990 (after a near-miss the previous year in Galway — a Kumlein's/Thayer's intergrade the cause of a mass of discussion at the time). Another juvenile followed in Antrim in March 1997 and a much-talked-about adult was found at Killybegs (Co. Donegal) in February 1998. More youngsters appeared in Mayo from December 1998 to April 1999 (possibly two birds there), again at Killybegs in February 2003, and, most recently, another hotly debated individual was on the Mullet back in Mayo in March 2005. Those early- to late-90s birds all seemed to fit the baby Thayer's bill to a tee...less so the most recent ones.

A proven British bird has yet to appear, but with the Dix Pit and Pools Brook bird of the winter of 2007/08 going (very) close, surely a cast-iron thayeri can't be too long in coming? The only question then is how the BOURC will view it.

The stunning dark juvenile gull that lingered on Ross Beach, Cleggan (Co. Galway) for much of the past seven days was initially seen at the tail end of last week. It was thought, initially, to have been perhaps a hybrid (with maybe some Glaucous-winged Gull influence) or perhaps a juvenile American Herring Gull. Persistence paid off this week though for the bird's finder; as the west-coast weather settled down a little, this ultra-distinctive individual could be scrutinised in more convivial conditions, and, on 22nd, the bird was finally identified as a Thayer's Gull. It remained for admirers to 26th. As is often the way, there has been further debate as to the bird's identity, but many people seem content that the correct conclusion has been reached now.

British birders not willing to cross the Irish Sea are still waiting for their first Thayer's Gull (although the bird in Oxfordshire, Derbyshire and North Yorkshire in the winter of 2007/08 ran it close; very close in fact). However, Ireland has at least six down on the record books (including one for the north) since the first accepted record, in County Cork in February 1990.

On Anglesey, the adult Bonaparte's Gull was continuing to drop in to Lligwy Bay from 21st–27th. An adult Kumlien's Gull was seen at the Cotswold Water Park (Wiltshire) on 23rd and may well be the bird seen at Cricklade on 21st. Iceland Gulls included at least four around Orkney (out of a total for the week of around 16 birds), while Glaucous Gulls again outscored their smaller white-winged allies, with at least 20 birds noted including three birds in Staffordshire and two in London, Staffordshire and Cleveland.

Caspian Gulls were again much in evidence this week, with perhaps as many as 36 birds recorded. Up to 13 birds have been seen around London, including six at Rainham Marshes on 23rd and four at Beddington SF the previous day. Four birds were seen at Wat Tyler CP (Essex) on 23rd and as many as seven have been seen recently around Appleford tip in Oxfordshire (where the Azorean Atlantic Gull still seems to be still residing from time to time). Up to five birds have been seen in Leicestershire during the week, including three at Shawell on 21st, but the big draw there (on the same day) was the adult Ring-billed Gull, the first in the county for almost four years and only the third since the start of the 2000s. The bird reappeared briefly on the morning of 22nd, but has failed to show since. Regular adult Ring-billed Gulls were in Hampshire, Essex and Argyll, while the second-winter was seen again at Strathclyde Loch (Clyde) on 23rd. Three birds (all adults) were noted in County Cork on 23rd, including two at Cuskinny Marsh, and three further adults were still at Nimmo's Pier (Co. Galway) on 24th.

Gull News 21st Jan 2010

On Anglesey, an adult Bonaparte's Gull was a decent find in Lligwy Bay on 14th and the bird continued to show, albeit only from time to time, until 18th. Another adult was seen in County Cork, at Cuskinny, on 17th. In Ireland, the adult American Herring Gull was still at Nimmo's Pier (Co. Galway this week), seen on 15th-18th, and a juvenile was eventually identified on Ross Beach, Cleggan, on 19th.

Ireland continued to dominate where Ring-billed Gulls were concerned, with birds in Antrim, Cork, Donegal, Dublin, Galway, Kerry, Londonderry, Limerick and Sligo. In England, the usual suspects were still in Hampshire and Essex, while at Chew Valley Lake (Somerset) a first-winter was seen on 15th and an adult was seen again on 16th. The adult was again at Seaforth (Lancashire) on 17th and a first-winter was on the Hayle Estuary (Cornwall) on 18th. A second-winter at Ravensthorpe Reservoir on 19th was new in Northamptonshire. In Scotland, an adult was again at Oban and a first-winter was at Kinneil Lagoons (Forth).

Iceland Gulls and Glaucous Gulls were rather thin on the ground, the latter species including two at Rainham Marshes (London) on 15th-20th. Around 20 Caspian Gulls were reported, with two different birds (a first-winter and an adult) seen during the week at Pegwell Bay in Kent and a first-winter at Prescot Reservoirs (Lancashire) on 16th. Amazing news, though, came from around the Vange Marsh area of Essex, where no fewer than 17 cachinnans have been seen recently, a truly remarkable figure (whether they were all in one go or in dribs and drabs!).

Gull News 14th January 2010

A possible second-winter Kumlien's Gull was reported from Carcroft (South Yorkshire) on 11th and a confirmed second-winter was near Irthlingborough (Northamptonshire) on 13th. The week's total of 22 Iceland Gulls included five at Stromness (Orkney) on 10th, and at least 27 Glaucous Gulls were seen, widely spread from Cornwall to Shetland.

Caspian Gulls were again well represented: at least 30 birds were found, including four at Dartford (Kent) on 10th. Also on 10th, three birds were seen at Blackborough End tip (Norfolk) and the previous day saw three at Fen Drayton Lakes (Cambridgeshire). Three different birds were noted at Rainham Marshes (London) during the week. Most others were seen in Midland counties, although the adult was still in Hampshire and Lancashire scored its second in a week when one appeared for several days at Seaforth NR until 11th (there have been fewer than ten previous records in the county).

Ireland beat the UK this week in terms of Ring-billed Gulls. There were two each for Antrim and Dublin (including a first-winter at Dun Laoghaire on 10th), with singles in Derry, Galway and Limerick. As well as regular birds in Hampshire, Essex and Argyll, an adult was at Seaforth on 8th + 9th and the second-winter was again at Strathclyde Loch on 10th and 12th. 

Gull News 7th January 2010

A juvenile American Herring Gull was a neat find for birders at Corbally Road Reservoir (Co. Antrim) on 25th and an adult Bonaparte's Gull on the Gannel Estuary (Cornwall) on 28th would have been equally exciting for the finders. Also from the other side of the Atlantic was the second-winter Kumlien's Gull found at Arlington Reservoir (East Sussex) on 25th, with another (un-aged) Kumlien's Gull reported at Gibraltar Point (Lincolnshire) on 1st. At least 35 Iceland Gulls included 14 in Scotland, while 17 of the 28 Glaucous Gulls reported were seen in England.

Caspian Gulls were seen in 16 different counties, with at least 45 birds noted, including a magnificent eight birds at Rainham Marshes (London) on 5th. At least eight were in Staffordshire (four each at Chasewater and Kingswood), up to four where seen in Derbyshire and three were reported in Northamptonshire. Also of note were the adult that (re)appeared at Blashford Lakes (Hampshire) between 24th and 3rd — this may well be the bird seen the same site on a few dates around the same time last winter — and the first-winter at Pilling (Lancashire) on 5th–6th.

It's been a good couple of weeks for Ring-billed Gulls, particularly in Ireland, where at least 20 birds were seen, including eight in County Cork alone, three of which were seen at Clonakilty on 26th. Three more were at Sandymount (Co. Dublin) on 4th. Two adults were also seen at Nimmo's Pier (Co. Galway) on 2nd. Four birds were seen in Scotland: a first-winter at Kinneil Lagoons (Forth) on 4th, a second-winter at Strathclyde Loch (Clyde) on 28th–3rd and adults at Findhorn (Moray) and Ormsary (Argyll), both on 29th. Seven English birds included a first-winter reported in Gloucestershire on 25th and adults in Worcestershire from 28th, Shropshire from 29th, Lancashire on 4th and Cornwall on 6th.

Gull News 7th May 2009

On Scilly, an adult summer BONAPARTE'S GULL was a nice surprise on Porthloo Beach, St. Mary's on 5th and on 6th, a summer LAUGHING GULL was found on Foula (Shetland) - the Solitary Sandpiper appearing half an hour later! A first-winter CASPIAN GULL was at Dungeness (Kent) and was the only record of the week. Only 35 or so ICELAND GULLS were noted this week, with half a dozen seen around the Outer Hebrides, at least three on Orkney and three at Nimmo's Pier (Co. Galway) as well.

An adult KUMLIEN'S GULL was again at Loch Ryan (Dumfries & Galloway) on 2nd-4th. The week's haul of GLAUCOUS GULLS just managed to make it to double figures, with three birds at Ullapool (Highland) on 6th. Two first-winter RING-BILLED GULLS (one of them a new arrival) were at the marina in Antrim on 30th-1st and a first-summer Ring-billed Gull was at Cuskinny Marsh (Co. Cork) on May Day, with two birds there on 6th.

Gull News 30th April 2009

The only CASPIAN GULL of the week was a second-summer reported at Newbiggin-by-the-Sea (Northumberland) on 24th. This week saw a slight hike in numbers of ICELAND GULLS: up from 45 to at least 65 birds, including 10 still at Killybegs (Co. Donegal) on 23rd. A juvenile KUMLIEN'S GULL was seen at the southern end of mainland Shetland on 23rd-26th with another Shetland juvenile on Whalsay on 28th. The third juvenile of the week was at Shawbost (Lewis) on 26th and it or another juvenile was seen at Loch Barvas, also on Lewis, on 29th.

An adult Kumlien's Gull was on Loch Ryan (Dumfries & Galloway) on 28th.The second-winter "Kumlien's Gull" was seen again at Blackborough End (Norfolk) on 25th, but photos of the bird show it to be closer in appearance to a Herring Gull (albeit an oddly marked one, or possibly some sort of Herring Gull hybrid); it certainly isn't the county's first Kumlien's Gull. Only around 20 GLAUCOUS GULLS were seen during the week but did include one with four Orcas off the Butt of Lewis (Outer Hebrides) on 26th while, also on the Hebrides, four birds were seen at Rubha Ardvule, South Uist on 27th. An adult RING-BILLED Gull was seen at Ballyheige Bay (Co. Kerry) on 25th and the second-winter was still at Lamby Lake (Glamorgan) on 28th.

Gull News 23rd April 09

The adult BONAPARTE'S GULL was at Farmoor Reservoir (Oxfordshire) on 16th-18th and another was seen at Tacumshin (Co. Wexford) on 18th. Two first-summer CASPIAN GULLS were seen at the London Wetland Centre on 17th.

Around 45 ICELAND GULLS were seen around Britain and Ireland this week, including five at Kinnegar Pools (Co. Down) on 18th. The only KUMLIEN'S GULLS of the week were the second-winter seen again at Blackborough End (Norfolk) on 18th (some three weeks after it was last reported there) and the first-winter at Rossaveal (Co. Galway) on 22nd. Numbers of GLAUCOUS GULLS fell to just above double figures this week. Just three RING-BILLED GULLS were reported over the week: a first-summer was at Loch Beg (Mull) on 18th and a first-winter was still in Northern Ireland, in Antrim, on the same day. The second-summer RING-BILLED GULL was still at Lamby Lake (Glamorgan) on 20th.

Gull News 16th April 09

There were three adult BONAPARTE'S GULLS to report this week: one remained around Peninerine, South Uist (Outer Hebrides) to 10th, when one was noted on the Swords Estuary (Co. Dublin) and these two were followed by a great find at Farmoor Reservoir (Oxfordshire) on 11th (the fourth record for the county and the site and all within the last decade). The latter bird went missing for day, but appeared again on 13th-15th. In Cheshire, at Sandbach Flashes, a possible first-summer AMERICAN HERRING GULL was seen on 9th-10th. Photos taken show a less-than-impressive beast which may be difficult to ever prove as smithsonianus - if it is one, it's at the less-than-classic end of the scale. As it stands, just three CASPIAN GULLS was reported this week: a first-summer seen at the London Wetland Centre on 12th (and again on 15th) with a second first year bird appearing at Dungeness (Kent) on 14th. A second-summer bird was at Livermere Lake (Suffolk) on 15th.

Numbers of ICELAND GULLS, as you may expect, continued to fall away this week, with around 65 birds reported from Britain and Ireland. Five at Ullapool (Highland) on 9th was the largest group noted, while three at Stranraer (Dumfries & Galloway) on 11th was of note (at least five birds were seen in the county this week). Up to five birds were also noted in Cheshire and the Outer Hebrides as well. The only KUMLIEN'S GULL was the juvenile still around Rossaveal (Co. Galway) on 14th. GLAUCOUS GULLS were even less in evidence: around 25 birds were noted countrywide, with up to five birds on the Outer Hebrides the only tally of note.

The first-summer RING-BILLED GULL was still at Helston (Cornwall) this week, while the first-year bird was still in Antrim too. Further young birds were at Cross Lough on the Mullet (Co. Mayo) on 13th and Loch Beg, Mull (Argyll) on 15th. A second-winter was also in Antrim this week, seen at Larne Lough on 11th, while the county's third bird of the week was an adult at Portrush on 12th. Two birds (an adult and a first-winter) were found at Quilty (Co. Cork) on 11th and an adult was at Nimmo's Pier (Co. Galway) on 12th.

Gull News 16th April 09

European News


Slaty-backed Gull in Latvia, still at Riga Tip 16th April.

European News


Slaty-backed Gull in Latvia, found at Riga Tip.

Gull news 9th April 2009

The adult BONAPARTE'S GULL was still at Peninerine (South Uist) until 3rd, while CASPIAN GULLS included three birds at the private site at Pitsea (Essex) on 4th, two at Minsmere (Suffolk) on 2nd, and singles at Holland Haven (Essex) on 2nd, Farmoor Reservoir (Oxfordshire) on 3rd, Orford Ness (Suffolk) on 4th and Rainham Marshes (London) on 7th.

ICELAND GULLS continued to drift away, but over 85 birds were still on offer, around 55 in Britain and at least 30 in Ireland. Ten were seen at Ullapool (Highland) on 5th, with five seen at Richmond Bank (Cheshire) and at the Shetland Catch factory, near Lerwick, all on 2nd. Four birds were at Elgin (Moray) on 3rd. In Ireland, there were six each for Castletown Bearhaven (Co. Cork), Rossaveal (Co. Galway) and Killybegs (Co. Donegal), with three in Dingle harbour (Co. Kerry). The second-winter KUMLIEN'S GULL remained around the Stewartby Lake (Bedfordshire) area from 2nd-4th and a juvenile was still at Rossaveal on 4th. GLAUCOUS GULLS struggled to make it into double figures this week, with just 30 or so reported across Britain and Ireland.

RING-BILLED GULL numbers fell away fairly sharply this week, with just nine birds reported. The adult at Seaforth (Lancashire) was seen again from 2nd-5th while the second-summer was again at Lamby Lakes (Glamorgan) on 7th. New birds included an adult at Helston (Cornwall) on 5th and a first year in Cardiff on 8th. In Ireland, adults were noted in counties Cork, Dublin, Galway, Sligo and Wicklow. Also in Ireland, a first-winter Ring-billed Gull was seen in Donegal on 3rd.

Gull news 2nd April 09

On 30th, a BONAPARTE'S GULL was seen on South Uist (Outer Hebrides) for the third year in a row (and the fourth year in the past five). Last year, an adult was noted from 4th April onwards and it seems highly likely that it is the same bird returning. In Glamorgan, the adult Bonaparte's Gull was still around the Taff Estuary and Cardiff Bay to 30th. The only CASPIAN GULLS this week were two birds (both first-winters) at Southwold (Suffolk) on 28th, two more (a first-winter and third-winter) at Swillington Ings (West Yorkshire) on 31st and a single bird at Ditchford GPs (Northamptonshire) on 29th.

A dozen ICELAND GULLS were still at the Shetland Catch factory near Lerwick on 28th and they were among some 55 birds seen in Britain this week. Ireland almost matched the British tally, with at least 47 birds noted. Rossaveal in County Galway led the way again with 11 birds on 28th. Up in Donegal, Killybegs scored nine on 29th, while at Nimmo's Pier (Galway) eight birds were present on 28th. Five young birds were at Baltimore (Co. Cork) on 27th.

Four KUMLIEN'S GULLS were reported this week. A second-winter was at Blackborough End (Norfolk) on 28th (the same bird as last week, but it was noted as a third-winter then). Also on 28th, single second-winter and third-winter birds were at Nimmo's Pier and a third-winter was again at Newtownards (Co. Down) on 29th. On 31st a second-winter Kumlien's Gull was seen in the roost at Stewartby Lake (Bedfordshire), reappearing the following evening.

Numbers of GLAUCOUS GULLS fell again this week, with only around 35 reported. Three were seen on North Ronaldsay (Orkney) on 27th and two juveniles were together in the harbour at Southwold (Suffolk) on 28th. On South Uist, six birds were seen on 1st.

An adult RING-BILLED GULL was reported belatedly from Newnham (Gloucestershire) on 25th. This week saw the first-winter remain at Helston (Cornwall), the second-winter again at Ferryside (Carmarthenshire) on 31st and regular adults still at Westcliff-on-Sea (Essex), Oban (Argyll) and Dingwall (Highland). In Lancashire, a first-winter Ring-billed Gull was at Stocks Reservoir on 28th and an adult was at Seaforth on 29th and 31st-1st. In Ireland, two adults were seen throughout the week at Nimmo's Pier with two more at Cuskinny Marsh (Co. Cork) on 29th. In Cork City, a first-winter was seen on 27th and another first-winter lingered in County Antrim to 30th. Single adults were also noted in Timoleague in Cork, as well as in Wicklow and Limerick but it was, once again, Sandymount in County Dublin that fared best with six birds (five adults and one second-winter) present on 30th.

Gull news 26th March 2009

A first-winter ROSS'S GULL was watched for 20 minutes late in the day of 22nd at Lytham St. Anne's (Lancashire) before flying off along the shoreline and being lost to view. It is almost a year ago that the popular (but ill-fated) adult Ross's Gull was seen in the same area; this year's bird was a rather shorter stayer. The adult BONAPARTE'S GULL lingered around the Taff Estuary, Cardiff (Glamorgan) from 19th-23rd, while the first-winter AMERICAN HERRING GULL on the Otter Estuary NR (Devon) was seen again on 20th, but not since.

Numbers of CASPIAN GULLS this week fell away to around ten birds. On 19th, two birds (a first-year and third-year) were seen at Rainham Marshes (London), while a first-winter was at Minsmere (Suffolk) and an adult was at Shawell (Leicestershire). In Essex, a third-winter Caspian Gull was at Pitsea tip on 21st when an adult and first-winter were at Blackborough End (Norfolk) and a first-summer bird was at the London Wetland Centre on 23rd. On 24th, back at Shawell, a fourth-winter was reported, and a second-winter was at Minsmere on 25th.

The total of ICELAND GULLS seen in Britain, like Caspian Gull, fell away this week, with around 60 birds recorded. Ten birds were still at the Shetland Catch factory near Lerwick on 21st, while five birds were at Richmond Bank (Cheshire) on 19th and four were at Throckmorton (Worcestershire) on 20th. In Ireland numbers held firm, even up a touch, with just under 60 birds recorded there. Eleven birds were at Rossaveal (Co. Galway) on 21st (with at least 14 birds recorded there during the week) and up to 18 birds were seen in County Cork, seven of them at Castletown Bearhaven on 23rd. Up to eight KUMLIEN'S GULLS were reported; the second-winter remained around Leicestershire and Warwickshire until 24th while a juvenile was still at the Shetland Catch factory to 22nd. At Swillington Ings (West Yorkshire) a second- or third-winter was seen on 24th, while a confirmed third-winter (a first for Norfolk) was seen at Blackborough End on 20th. In Ireland, single juveniles were on Inish Mor (Co. Galway) on 20th-21st and at Rossaveal on 22nd, while a third-winter was again at Newtownards (Co. Down).

Following on from around 85 birds last week, fewer than 40 GLAUCOUS GULLS were registered over the past week. On 24th, at least six were seen on South Uist (Outer Hebrides) and three were on North Ronaldsay (Orkney). At least three different birds were in Cleveland and Highland during the week, while two birds were seen in Suffolk, Northumberland, Glamorgan and Argyll.

RING-BILLED GULL also saw a fall in numbers over the past seven days: three birds in Britain and eleven in Ireland. An adult was at Dingwall (Highland) on 19th-21st while the adult at Strathclyde Loch (Clyde) was present to 23rd at least. An adult was seen at Sturt Pond (Hampshire) on 21st while in Cornwall the first-winter was again at Helston on 25th. Irish birds were an adult and first-winter still at Six Mile Water (Co. Antrim) to 19th while four adults were at Nimmo's Pier (Co. Galway) and five more were seen at Sandymount (Co. Dublin) on 25th.

Gull News 19th March 2009

The adult BONAPARTE'S GULL was still seen daily in Cardiff (Glamorgan) from 12th-17th at least, while the first-winter AMERICAN HERRING GULL on the Otter Estuary (Devon) was seen each afternoon between 13th and 16th. The adult smithsonianus remained in Galway to 15th at least.

The tip at Pitsea (Essex) produced three CASPIAN GULLS on 14th (a third-winter and two first-winters), while Suffolk's Minsmere RSPB reserve hosted three different birds during the week, a first-winter and two third-winters. Elsewhere, it was two birds each for Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and London, along with a further single for Essex, as well as loners in Kent, Norfolk, Warwickshire, Leicestershire and Staffordshire.

After a huge week last week, ICELAND GULLS slumped markedly over the past seven days. Around 80 birds were noted in Britain, with around 50 in Ireland. Five birds were still at the Shetland Catch factory near Lerwick on 13th, while the highest count of the week was of 14 at Killybegs (Co. Donegal) on 14th, a total that included 10 juveniles. Numbers of KUMLIEN'S GULLS also fell away this week: single juveniles were seen on Scilly and at Rainham Marshes (London), with the second-winter seen last week at Shawell (Leicestershire) remaining to 18th but also making appearances near Rugby (Warwickshire) on a couple of occasions during the week. Another second-winter bird lingered at Nimmo's Pier (Co. Galway), while two birds, a juvenile and third-winter, were still in the same county, at Clifden on 16th.

GLAUCOUS GULL numbers also fell away this week. Around 55 birds were recorded in Britain, with five at Balranald (North Uist) on 12th and four at Marwick (Orkney) on 15th the highest totals noted. In Ireland, up to 30 birds were seen, including seven (six of them youngsters) at Killybegs on 14th.

Just as last week (and a few weeks before that as well), Ireland was firmly in charge of all things RING-BILLED GULL. Cream of the crop were the six adults at Sandymount (Co. Dublin) on 18th, with a first-winter again at Bull Island on 14th. Two adults were at Nimmo's Pier during the week and two sets of two adults were in County Cork, at Cuskinny Marsh and Tivoli Docks. Three further singles were noted around the county during the week. Adults were seen again at Tramore (Co. Waterford) on 14th and Bray (Co. Wicklow) on 16th, while a second-winter was at Belfast Lough RSPB (Co. Antrim) on 15th. In Cornwall, single first-winters were still at Helston and Dinham Flats, while further first-winters were reported for half an hour at Pegwell Bay (Kent) on 14th and Stanpit Marsh (Dorset) on 18th. Otherwise, it was familiar adults in Hampshire, Essex, Argyll and Clyde.

Gull news 12th March 2009

An adult BONAPARTE'S GULL was a neat find in Cardiff (Glamorgan) on 8th, the third adult seen in the area since 2004, and the bird continue to pop up on 9th-11th. The much-discussed possible second-winter AMERICAN HERRING GULL was seen again at Seaforth Docks (Lancashire) on 5th and was followed by the reappearance of the first-winter on the Otter Estuary (Devon) on 6th-7th and again on 9th. A new first-winter American Herring Gull was found at Castletown Bearhaven (Co. Cork) on 8th and the adult was at Nimmo's Pier from time to time to the week's end.

It was a poor week for CASPIAN GULLS, with around eight birds noted. In Kent, Dungeness scored at least two, while in Essex the tip at Pitsea did likewise. Another Essex bird, a first-winter, was seen at Mistley on 8th, with further first-winters appearing in the roost at Stewartby Lake (Bedfordshire) on 6th, at Rainham Marshes (London) on 9th and on Draycote Water (Warwickshire) on 10th.

ICELAND GULLS continued to impress with the numbers present across the UK and Ireland: at least 100 birds in Britain and around 80 in Ireland this week. The Irish tally included eight birds at Nimmo's Pier on 11th, nine in Dingle (Co. Kerry) on 8th, 10 at Castletown Bearhaven in Cork and 11 at Reenard Point (Co. Kerry) on 7th, with 11 at Rossaveal (Co. Galway) on 11th. However the week's highest count was of 12 at the Shetland Catch factory, near Lerwick, also on 7th. Four birds at Swillington Ings (West Yorkshire) on 10th were also of note. Following probable KUMLIEN'S GULLS in West Yorkshire and Devon, confirmed birds this week were single juveniles on Scilly, at Rossaveal and Castletown Bearhaven, single second-winters at Shetland Catch on 7th and Shawell (Leicestershire) on 10th-11th, third-winters at Clifden (Co. Galway) and Reenard Point (Co. Kerry) and an adult seen in the roost at Stewartby Lake (Bedfordshire) on 8th. Two birds (a second-winter and third-winter) were still at Nimmo's Pier to 7th.

Numbers of GLAUCOUS GULLS peaked at around 90-95 birds this week, with at least 16 still on the Gualan spit, South Uist (Outer Hebrides) on 5th and 9th. On 9th, perhaps as many as 29 birds were seen around South Uist, while the previous day had seen a confirmed 23 around the island group, a figure which included seven at Aird an Runair on North Uist. Up to seven birds were also on Orkney this week, while in Ireland, Castletown Bearhaven managed seven on 7th and five were seen at Ferriter's Cove (Co. Kerry) on 8th.

As with Cattle Egrets, it was Ireland that was dominant where RING-BILLED GULL was concerned this week. At least 23 birds were seen during the week, with four adults at Cuskinny Marsh on 8th and four further adults at Sandymount (Co. Dublin) on 11th the largest groups noted. Cork boasted at least eight birds in all, including a first-winter at Bantry on 7th. Three birds were in County Kerry, including two at Blennerville, and an adult and first-winter were seen in Antrim on 8th-9th. A new first-winter was on Bull Island (Co. Dublin) on 6th-7th. Singles were also in Galway, Sligo, Limerick and Wicklow. At least eight birds were seen in Britain this week, including the second-winter bird again at Ferryside (Carmarthenshire) and notable adults again at Strathclyde Loch (Clyde), Seaforth, Moore (Cheshire) and Lytchett Bay (Dorset). One was reported from Brightlingsea (Essex) on 10th.

Gull News 8th March 2009

Breaking news  Bonaparte's Gull in Glamorgan.

Ad at Cardiff on River Taff on West side of Taff Estuary at end of Jim Driscoll Way + 50yds South of pontoons.

There are 159 accepted records of Bonaparte's Gull in Britain and 41 in Ireland.
The most recent published record for Glamorgan was in 2006.

European News

Juv Thayer's Gull at Eysturoy at Runavik Faroe Islands for 2nd day.

Gull news 5th March 2009

The adult AMERICAN HERRING GULL was still being seen around Nimmo's Pier and Galway Docks to 3rd and a late report of a second-winter bird at Seaforth (Lancashire) on 25th was backed up by a number of impressive-looking photographs - it has a lot going for it and is no ordinary "Herring Gull". Over 20 CASPIAN GULLS were noted this week. An adult was again at Albert Village lake (Leicestershire) early in the week, and another Leicestershire adult was at Eyebrook Reservoir on 26th. First-winter birds were seen at Paxton Pits (Cambridgeshire), Belvide Reservoir (Staffordshire) Willen Lake (Buckinghamshire) and again at Sandbach Flashes (Cheshire), while a near-adult was at Westbere GPs (Kent) and adults were at Swillington Ings (West Yorkshire), Leadenham (Lincolnshire) Blackborough End tip (Norfolk) and Dungeness (Kent). Two birds were at Pitsea tip (Essex) on 28th and Rainham Marshes (London) on 2nd and 3rd.

The 2nd also saw four Caspian Gulls (an adult, two third-winters and a second-winter) appear at Hockwold Fen, on the Norfolk/Suffolk border. ICELAND GULLS remained in three figures this week, with at least 95 birds seen around Britain and 40 or more over in Ireland. On 28th, nine birds were counted at Nimmo's Pier with 10 birds (an adult, two second-winters and seven juveniles) across at Rossaveal. The only KUMLIEN'S GULLS this week were two birds at Nimmo's Pier (the adult and a third-winter) from 26th, the relocating (from Clifden) dark juvenile at Rossaveal (Co. Galway), a second-winter over Throckmorton Tip (Worcestershire) and on St. Mary's (Scilly), the juvenile was present all week.

The number of GLAUCOUS GULLS on the Gualan spit, South Uist (Outer Hebrides) hit a fantastic 19 birds on 1st and 3rd. These were part of some 100 birds seen in Britain and Ireland this week, with up to eight seen around the Mullet (Co. Mayo) on 2nd. Elsewhere it was largely singles or twos, although four birds seen at Ballycotton (Co. Cork) on 1st and four more at Liscannor (Co. Clare) on 3rd were also of note.

Ireland was still dominant in the RING-BILLED GULL stakes this week. Three adults were at Sandymount (Co. Dublin) on 2nd, and three adults were at Cuskinny Marsh (Co. Cork) and in Co. Derry on 3rd (where there were two together on the Faughan Estuary). Earlier in the week two adults were still at Nimmo's Pier and two birds (an adult and a second-winter) were seen at Cuskinny Marsh (Co. Cork). Further birds in Cork, both adults, were seen at Lough Aderra and Cobh, while elsewhere in the country, single adults were at Bray (Co. Wicklow) and in Limerick City. A first-winter was found in Donegal on 4th. Two first-winter birds were still in Cornwall, the usual bird at Helston and another was again at Dinham Flats on 1st. A first-winter Ring-billed Gull was a great find at Rainton Meadows (Co. Durham) on 28th, reappearing on 1st, and adults were found seen at Seaforth on 28th and Strathclyde Loch (Clyde) on 1st. Regular adults remained in Essex, Hampshire, Argyll and Angus, while the second-winter popped in again to Lamby Lake (Glamorgan) on 2nd.

Gull News 26th February 2009

An adult BONAPARTE'S GULL was again at Cobh (Co. Cork) on 20th (having last been seen here on 1st February). Last week's first-winter AMERICAN HERRING GULL at Budleigh Salterton (Devon) was seen again on 20th, while the adult at Nimmo's Pier (Co. Galway) was noted again on 21st. With no news from Pitsea tip this week, numbers of CASPIAN GULLS took a bit of a nose-dive, with only 17 birds recorded. Three (two adults and a third-winter) were seen at Albert Village lake (Leicestershire) on 20th and two (single second- and fourth-summer birds) were at Minsmere (Suffolk) on 23rd, with three birds the following day (including a third-winter and adult). Two singles were in Northamptonshire and Staffordshire, with one each for Berkshire, London, Oxfordshire, Kent, Derbyshire, Cheshire, West Yorkshire, along with another single in Suffolk.

ICELAND GULLS pretty much held their own this week - again, some 90 birds were recorded around Britain this week, while at least 55 were seen in Ireland. Six birds were counted at Moore NR (Cheshire) on 21st, while three juveniles were seen at Seaton (Devon) on 22nd. At least four individuals were at Albert Village lake in the early part of the week and at least five birds were seen at Mallaig (Highland) on 25th. In Ireland, up to nine birds were seen in County Down, seven birds were at Nimmo's Pier on 20th and 10 were at Killybegs (Co. Donegal) on 22nd. Second-winter KUMLIEN'S GULLS were recorded at four sites around the Midlands this week: at Priorslee Lake (Shropshire) and Belvide Reservoir (Staffordshire) on 20th, at Bartley Reservoir (West Midlands) on 22nd-25th and Wildmoor Sand Quarry (Worcestershire) on 23rd-24th. The juvenile remained on St. Mary's (Scilly) throughout the week. Two birds, an adult and a third-winter, remained at Nimmo's Pier during much of the week and, also in County Galway, third-winter birds were seen at Clifden and Rossaveal, with a juvenile at the latter site on 24th. An adult Kumlien's Gull was still at Killybegs on 21st.

With numbers of Iceland Gulls much as they were, GLAUCOUS GULLS in Britain saw numbers fall to almost half of last week's total, from 80 to around 50. At least 16 were still around the Gualan spit, South Uist (Outer Hebrides) to 22nd, while Irish numbers remained on a more even keel, with at least 41 seen, including nine at Annagh Head, the Mullet (Co. Mayo) on 20th (with three more at nearby Cross Strand) and eight at Killybegs. RING-BILLED GULLS mustered up to 20 birds this week, with half of them in Ireland, including four (an adult and three second-winters) at Cobh on 20th, a couple of adults still at Nimmo's Pier to 21st and an adult was also seen at Killybegs (funnily enough this is one of the scarcer gull species for the site). Two new birds were noted in Cornwall (a first-winter at Dinham Flats on 20th and a second-winter at the Hayle Estuary on 23rd). A second-winter was at Ferryside (Carmarthenshire) on 21st-22nd - this site was, of course, where Britain's first Glaucous-winged Gull was relocated - and notable adults were at Wareham (Dorset) on 20th, in Cheshire, at Sandbach Flashes on 21st-22nd and, on the cusp of Merseyside and Lancashire, at Seaforth on 23rd.

Gull News 19th February 2009

In Devon, a first-winter AMERICAN HERRING GULL was seen at Budleigh Salterton on the afternoon of 13th, but further searches proved fruitless. Numbers of CASPIAN GULLS fell away to only 20 or so this week, with three first-winters at Pitsea (Essex) on 14th, two more first-winters at Sandbach Flashes (Cheshire) on the same date, while three birds in Suffolk were also of particular note.

 ICELAND GULLS reached nearly 90 birds (from at least 53 counties) in Britain this week, while Ireland scored at least 55 birds from just nine counties, helped by the big scores of 20 at Killybegs (Co. Donegal) on 15th and 12 at Nimmo's Pier (Co. Galway) on 14th. Both sites (perhaps unsurprisingly) also held KUMLIEN'S GULLS this week: an adult at the former site on 15th and an adult and second-winter at the latter site on 14th.

 Also in County Galway on 14th, a third-winter was again at Clifden. Juvenile Kumlien's Gulls remained on St. Mary's (Scilly), at Forfar Loch and Kirriemuir (Angus) and at Stornoway, Lewis (Outer Hebrides). GLAUCOUS GULLS too managed comfortably to keep numbers in three figures this week with a split of almost 80 birds in Britain and just over 50 in Ireland. On the Gualan spit, South Uist (Outer Hebrides), at least 12 birds remained to 13th, while on Tiree (Argyll), perhaps as many as 13 birds were noted around the island during the week (with two dead birds as well). Killybegs' haul was 13 on 15th, while on the Mullet (Co. Mayo) 15 birds were seen on 14th.

RING-BILLED GULLS this week included regular adults in Hampshire, London, Essex and Angus, the second-winter in Glamorgan and the first-winter in Cornwall, at Helston. An adult was seen again in Cheshire, at Richmond Bank on 14th and Moore NR on 16th, and an adult was at Lamby Lake on 14th (the third bird at the site this winter). Another Welsh adult was at Llys-y-fran Reservoir (Pembrokeshire) on 17th-18th. In Ireland, at least 13 birds were seen this week, including four adults at Nimmo's Pier on 14th and three at Cuskinny Marsh (Co. Cork) on 12th.


Giant Seagull attacks News Anchor live on TV, watch here.

For the birds: Gull struck by winning hit

CLEVELAND -- What happens when a baseball strikes a seagull on the field? The ball is in play and, as it happened on Thursday night, the Cleveland Indians score the winning run to post a 4-3 victory over the Kansas City Royals.

This one for the book came in the 10th inning at Progressive Field with the Indians trying to break a tie with the Royals. Mark DeRosa singled and Victor Martinez walked against reliever Kyle Farnsworth.

Shin-Soo Choo singled sharply up the middle straight toward a flock of seagulls who were lounging in center field. The gulls, apparently in pursuit of bugs, had been swarming over the field during the entire series.

Choo's line drive kicked in the outfield grass, struck a bird, then skipped away and rolled all the way to the wall, as DeRosa scored the winning run from second base.

Center fielder Coco Crisp raised his arms in frustration, but there was no arguing the play. Umpire crew chief Mike Reilly confirmed that any ball striking one of the birds in fair territory is in play.

"They're in play -- whatever it does off that bird," Reilly said.

Crisp initially said he thought the ball hit a bird but wasn't sure. He was assured that it did, sending a feather flying. The bird, after the initial shock, was able to fly away.

"So it did hit a bird. Crazy things happen in this game," Crisp said. "That's why it's a great game."

Had Crisp been able to field the ball, would he have had a play at plate?

"I had a chance. You never know what the heck's going to happen. You catch the ball, make the throw, good or bad one, and sometimes you get 'em and most of the time you don't, especially from center field," Crisp said.

"But it was hit so sharply I felt like I had a chance."

Reilly, who was umpiring first base, thought that perhaps Crisp had a shot.

"Believe me, we talked about it when we came in. There probably would have been a play at the plate had not there been interference by the bird," Reilly said. "There's nothing we can do with those things."

Choo was happy that Crisp didn't have a chance to deprive him of the game-ending hit.

"I saw in the video that I hit the bird," Choo said. "The bird helped. I'll take it."

Indians manager Eric Wedge didn't think the ball hitting the bird had any impact on the outcome.

"I think DeRo was in pretty good shape there [to score], anyway," he said.

Tribe players and coaches were having a pretty good laugh about the bird after the game. But first baseman Ryan Garko said the joke is getting old. The seagulls have become season-ticket holders at Progressive Field the past two homestands -- flying overhead and resting in the outfield grass during play -- and Garko, for one, is tired of playing under and around them.

"Something needs to be done," Garko said. "There's got to be a way to get rid of them. It's kind of embarrassing. We look like a bunch of kids playing on an abandoned field. It's kind of funny but kind of not funny."

Garko said the birds hovering over the outfield grass can be distracting to a batter.

"You've got white things moving in the background," he said. "It looks like a baseball."

Sooner or later, it stood to reason that one of the birds would get struck, and it finally happened -- in a crucial situation, no less.

The bird struck by Choo's hit wobbled around for a while before finally gathering itself and taking flight again. It left behind a feather that was still sitting in the outfield grass after the victorious Indians cleared the field.

Reilly, speaking for the umpires, explained that a ball hitting a bird is in play wherever it falls.

"If it hits the bird and then comes down foul, it'd be a foul ball. If it hits the bird and stays fair, it'd be a fair ball -- catch off a bird or whatever," he said.

Would the umpires ever have a situation where they'd have to chase the gulls off the field?

"I never have but, boy, if you chased 'em once, you'd be chasing them all night," Reilly said. "If you had a squirrel or a cat, you could get 'em out of there. I've been on the field for all that stuff, but I've never chased seagulls out of there. That's a classic."

Of course, the story brought up memories of when Dave Winfield threw a ball that killed a seagull in Toronto. It happened on Aug. 4, 1983, when Winfield was with the Yankees. He was warming up in the fifth inning when his throw accidentally hit and killed a gull. This time, the gull escaped.

"I don't even remember the birds being here at all when I was here," Crisp said. "There were bugs. I guess that's what brought the birds -- the whole nature thing. I'd rather actually have the birds rather that the bugs, as long as they don't get in the way."

This time, though, one gull did.

See the Video here

Gulls vicious attacks on Whales

Whales off the coast of Argentina have aquired a new enemy- Gulls, go to the link here.

Killer whales can teach each other new skills. (File photo)

Killer whales can teach each other new skills.

Gull-trapping killer whales show learning skills

Killer whales which set traps to catch seagulls have become the third known animal species to possess "cultural learning" - a skill which is transmitted to other members of their group.

The gull-trapping trick was initiated by a four-year-old orca in a tank at Marineland at Niagara Falls in Ontario, Canada, according to a report in next Saturday's issue of New Scientist.

The mammal discovered he could lure seagulls into his tank by spitting regurgitated fish onto the water's surface.

It then lurked below the surface, waiting for a gull to grab the fish, and then seized the bird in its open jaws.

After a few months of feathered snacks, the killer whale started to be joined by his younger half-brother, and soon thereafter they were joined by their mothers, a six-month-old calf and an older male.

The clever whales are able to catch three or four gulls on some days.

In June, researchers showed that wild dolphins off Australia taught each other to use sponges to protect their snouts while grubbing for food on the sea floor.

And earlier this month, US scientists reported on two groups of chimpanzees whose members adopted rival methods to use a stick to coax food out of a feeder.

The latest discovery was made by animal behaviourist Michael Noonan of Canisius College in Buffalo, New York, who presented his findings at a conference earlier this month, the British weekly says.

Gull Sets Arctic Pollution Record for Birds

Eggs of the ivory gull, which has a population of about 14,000 from Siberia to Canada, were found to have the highest known concentrations of PCBs, long used in products such as paints or plastics, and the pesticide DDT.

"Environmental poisons are threatening ivory gulls," the Norwegian Polar Institute said in a statement of eggs collected off northern Norway and Russia. "Levels of PCB and DDT are higher in ivory gulls than in other Arctic seabirds."

The long-lasting chemicals, swept north by prevailing winds and currents from industrial centres, often end in the Arctic where they build up in fatty tissues of animals, fish and birds.

A 2001 UN convention outlawed most uses of 12 so-called persistent organic pollutants after the chemicals were found in the breast milk of Inuit women and in polar bears. Levels of many of the "dirty dozen" in the Arctic have been falling.

"Ivory gulls are top predators, that's a main reason why they have high levels of contaminants," said Hallvard Stroem, of the Polar Institute. The gulls eat cod and other fatty fish and also scavenge dead seals or polar bears for a fat-charged diet.

"We're not sure why the levels are higher than for other birds," he told Reuters, adding there were no known local sources of the pollutants to explain the high concentrations.

PCBs, at up to 0.02 percent of the egg weight, were comparable with those found in some polar bears 20 years ago.

Previous studies show that the chemical pollutants can have effects on birds such as shortening lifespans or thinning of eggshells. Ivory gulls can live about 10 to 20 years.

The shrinking of Arctic sea ice in recent years, apparently because of global warming, also threatens the birds by reducing the size of their habitat. The gulls feed most around the fringes of the ice, where fish and plankton thrive.

"Climate change is an added stress -- the ivory gull is dependent on the sea ice," Stroem said.

The survey was carried out after reports that numbers of ivory gulls had plunged by 80 percent in Canada. Stroem said population trends elsewhere were not clear.

Junk food fed Gulls become Sterile!

Urban seagulls eat fatty leftovers
Enlarge picture
The fact that obese people have fertility problems is a well-known fact. Obesity raises the risk for C-Section, impedes breastfeeding, while these children are more prone to high birth weight and childhood obesity and chronic disease. More than half of the overweight and obese women get excessive weight during pregnancy. The same problem is also faced by our pets.

All these problems appear in our society due to our diet based on junk food, which is rich in carbohydrates (sugars) and fats (lipids).

But if you thought that junk food affects only human sex, learn what researcher Heidi Auman of the University of Tasmania found out: Seagulls gorging themselves on greasy junk food can also get overweight and have breeding problems.

Auman has discovered that silver gulls (Larus novaehollandiae) feeding on fatty scraps thrown to them from seaside cafes in Hobart have turned morbidly overweight. She has been comparing city birds to those from wild populations on the remote Furneaux Islands, off Tasmania's north-east, as part of her doctoral thesis for almost four years. "The urban gulls were about 10 % fatter and had higher cholesterol, which was leading to poor-quality eggs and a possible nosedive in their populations.", said Auman, who has investigated human impacts on sea birds for 20 years.

"The roly-poly gulls were still able to fly but the junk food was having the same effect on them as it does on humans."

Still, another Harvard research shows that fat shortage in the food also impairs fertility. A low-fat dairy diet inflicts anovulatory infertility, by preventing ovulation. Anovulatory infertility was found to present much higher percentage in women who ate only low-fat dairy products (like skimmed milk and low-fat yoghurt). The researchers are puzzled as other fat types than the ones to be found in diary products do not have the same effect.

Twitchers flock to glimpse Glaucous-winged Gull

A rare bird sighting on Teesside

BIRDSPOTTERS from across the UK have been sent into a flap by the arrival of an extremely rare seagull in the North.

Hundreds of twitchers have descended on Cowpen Bewley, Teesside, where a glaucous winged gull has been spotted flying around near a nature reserve.

Trying to spot the bird has proved tricky, however, as it looks almost identical to the hundreds of other seagulls which live there! The large gull may be common in America, but its presence in the region caused a massive stir among twitchers all over the country, many of whom have driven hundreds of miles for what is known in the bird world as a “mega sighting”.

News of its presence has been circulating on birdwatchers’ websites and forums, but no one is quite sure when the gull first arrived here.

It was first spotted on New Year’s Eve but some enthusiasts believe it could have been there before that.

Ron McCombe, of Coldstream in The Borders, spent most of Friday trying to spot the rare bird.

Photographer Ron, 54, said: “I think there is another one in the country at the moment, somewhere down south, and it’s very very rare . . . it’s what’s known as ‘a mega’.

“I got a text through from the Rare Bird Alert website and headed down. It’s a two-hour journey here and, once I arrived, there were already lots of others there.

“Some had travelled all the way from Hampshire just to see the gull.

“It does look just like all the other seagulls, but there are subtle differences. It’s very pale and has a grey mantle — the top of its head — and there are small markings on the wing tips to look out for too.”

Armed with cameras and binoculars, twitchers have been around the Cowpen Bewley area on a daily basis trying to spot the American visitor among the huge flock of seagulls.

Snapper Ron — who has been a birdwatcher for 30 years — said: “It’s been absolutely crazy.

“Someone’s phone rang, he hung up and shouted ‘it’s on the other side of the roundabout’.

“Then it was like a scene from Le Mans, with everyone bumping into each other as they grabbed their gear, jumped into their cars and headed to the spot where the bird was seen.

“There must be around 150 cars parked on the side of the road, and everyone was trying to do a u-turn to get to the right place.

“But then this bird is so very rare . . . it’s travelled thousands of miles on jet streams to get here.”

Man cited in beating of ice cream-stealing gull


Heermann's Gull attacked Kansas couple eating ice cream at Laguna Beach; the bird was later euthanized.

The Orange County Register

LAGUNA BEACH – A rare Heermann's gull that attacked a Kansas couple and tried to steal their ice cream at Main Beach was euthanized after being beaten with a stick, police said today.

Dragan Djuric, 50, of Wichita, Kan., was cited and released on suspicion of animal cruelty in connection with the New Year's Eve incident, said Laguna Beach police Sgt. Jeff Calvert.

Djuric was eating ice cream with his wife about 2:53 p.m. when several birds attacked, Calvert said. One bird hit Djuric's wife in the head and tried to grab the ice cream, Calvert said.

The couple dropped their ice cream on the boardwalk, and Djuric, who had been defecated on, began waving a stick and hitting the birds, Calvert said.

The Heermann's gull, which had a broken wing, was taken to the Wetland and Wildlife Care Center in Huntington Beach, where it was euthanized. It was unclear what day the gull was euthanized.

A second bird believed to be attacked made its way back to the ocean, Calvert said.

Heermann's gulls, an unusually aggressive species of Pacific Coast gull, are on the Audubon Society's watch list for endangered or threatened birds, according to the society's Web site.

"Heermann's gull is a unique bird of the Pacific Coast,'' the site says. "Almost the entire global population of this species breeds on one island group off the coast of western Mexico; following breeding season, these gulls disperse northward along the coast as far as southern British Columbia.

"Surprisingly aggressive for birds their size, Heermann's gulls steal fish from the pouches of brown pelicans and actively chase other birds to dislodge prey items."

General Gull News

December 5, 2007

BOURC taxonomic changes - better news for gull enthusiasts

The latest (fourth) report of the Taxonomic Sub-committee of the BOU Records Committee has finally recognised American Herring Gull and Caspian Gull at the species level.

The report states:

"We recommend recognition of the following species to better reflect recent advances in knowledge of the evolution and systematics of large gulls:

• Caspian Gull Larus cachinnans (monotypic)
• Lesser Black-backed Gull Larus fuscus (polytypic, including fuscus, intermedius, graellsii, heuglini, taimyrensis, barabensis)
• American Herring Gull Larus smithsonianus (polytypic, including smithsonianus, vegae, mongolicus)
• Yellow-legged Gull Larus michahellis (polytypic, including michahellis, atlantis)
• Armenian Gull Larus armenicus (monotypic)
• Herring Gull Larus argentatus (polytypic, including argentatus, argenteus)"

Caspian Gull
1stw Caspian Gull

Herring Gull Larus argentatus, Yellow-legged Gull L. michahellis, Armenian Gull L. armenicus and Lesser Black-backed Gull L. fuscus

The recommendation that Yellow-legged Gull L. michahellis and Armenian Gull L. armenicus should be treated as separate species from Herring Gull L. argentatus was communicated previously (Sangster et al. 2005. Ibis 147: 821–826). Phylogenetic evidence based on analysis of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequences indicates that the large white-headed gull complex consists of two main clades: (1) an 'Atlantic' clade consisting of Yellow-legged Gull, Armenian Gull, most individuals of Herring Gull, and including Great Black-backed Gull L. marinus and Palearctic individuals of Glaucous Gull L. hyperboreus; (2) an 'Aralo-Caspian' clade consisting of L. a. cachinnans, L. a. barabensis, L. a. heuglini, L. a. taimyrensis, Lesser Black-backed Gull L. fuscus, Kelp Gull L. dominicanus, some individuals of L. a. argentatus, and including an 'Arctic/Pacific' grouping of L. a. vegae, L. a. smithsonianus, L. a. mongolicus, Slaty-backed Gull L. schistisagus, Iceland Gull L. glaucoides, Glaucous-winged Gull L. glaucescens and Nearctic individuals of Glaucous Gull (Crochet et al. 2002. Auk 119: 603–620; Crochet et al. 2003. Evolution 57: 2865–2878; Liebers et al. 2004. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. B 271: 893–901). Western Gull L. occidentalis is not included in these clades and forms an outgroup. Genetic structure between the taxa is generally well-defined, except within the Arctic/Pacific grouping of the Aralo-Caspian clade, for which the taxa are poorly separated with some shared haplotypes (Gay et al. 2005. Auk 122: 684–688).

Morphological and genetic variation in Lesser Black-backed Gulls L. fuscus fuscus, L. f. intermedius and L. f. graellsii is clinal (Liebers & Helbig 2002. J. Evol. Biol. 15: 1021–1033). These taxa are closely related to the West Siberian taxa L. a. heuglini, L. a. taimyrensis and L. a. barabensis with evidence of continuing low levels of gene flow in spite of apparent ecological separation of L. f. fuscus and L. a. heuglini in parapatry (Filchagov et al. 1992a. Zool. Zh. 71: 148–152; Rauste 1999. Limicola 13: 105–128; 153–188; Liebers & Helbig 2002; Liebers et al. 2004). It is recommended that these taxa be treated as a single species L. fuscus. Variation in heuglini is slight (Buzun 2002. Br. Birds 95: 216–232) and the validity of taimyrensis has been questioned (Filchagov et al. 1992b. L'Oiseau 62: 128–148; Yésou 2002. Dutch Birding 64: 271–298).

Caspian Gull L. a. cachinnans is diagnosably distinct from all other taxa on the basis of plumage and vocalisations (Panov et al. 1991a. Zool. Zh. 70/1: 76–90; Panov et al. 1991b. Zool. Zh. 70/3: 73–89; Garner & Quinn 1997. Br. Birds 90: 25–62; Klein & Gruber 1997. Limicola 11: 49-75; Liebers & Dierschke 1997. Dutch Birding 19: 277–280; Jonsson 1998. Alula 3: 74–100; Yésou 2002). It forms a discrete genetic grouping and is probably most closely related to the West Siberian gulls heuglini and barabensis. However, introgression between cachinnans and the West Siberian taxa is restricted and probably unidirectional (Panov & Monzikov 2000. Br. Birds 93: 227–241; Liebers et al. 2004). Recent range expansion has led to widespread hybridization with argentatus Herring Gulls in Central and Eastern Europe which may partly underlie the apparently large intrataxon variation in cachinnans (Klein & Gruber 1997. Limicola 11: 49–75; Liebers & Dierschke 1997; Panov & Monzikov 1999. Russ. J. Zool. 3: 129–141). However the hybrid zone is reported to be narrow in relation to the potential dispersal distance of the parental taxa (Neubauer et al. 2006. Vogelwelt 127: 11–22; Yakovets 2006. Vogelwelt 127: 23–30). Based on this evidence, it is recommended that Caspian Gull be treated as a monotypic species L. cachinnans.

Genetic evidence suggests that East Siberian and American Herring Gulls, L. a. vegae, L. a. mongolicus and L. a. smithsonianus fall within the Arctic/Pacific species group of the Aralo-Caspian clade (Liebers et al. 2004; de Knijff et al. 2005. Birding 37: 402–411; Gay et al. 2005). There are sharp genetic and morphological boundaries between vegae and the parapatric or partially sympatric West Siberian taxon heuglini (Yésou 1994. Alauda 62: 247-252; Liebers et al. 2004; Yésou 2002). Many individuals of vegae, mongolicus and smithsonianus can be identified to subspecies (Lonergan & Mullarney 2004. Dutch Birding 26: 1–35), but diagnosability with respect to each other has not been demonstrated. Although many individuals can be identified, smithsonianus is not fully diagnosable from European Herring Gulls on the basis of plumage alone (Lonergan & Mullarney 2004; Adriaens & Mactavish 2004. Dutch Birding 26: 151–179) but is clearly differentiated on the basis of mtDNA (Crochet et al. 2002, 2003, Liebers et al. 2004, Gay et al. 2005). In addition, European Herring Gulls are reported to respond poorly to calls of smithsonianus (Frings et al. 1958. Ecology 39: 126–131). Based on current evidence, American Herring Gull L. smithsonianus is best treated as a separate species. Given their lack of diagnostic differences, vegae and mongolicus are considered conspecific with L. smithsonianus.

We recommend recognition of the following species to better reflect recent advances in knowledge of the evolution and systematics of large gulls:

  • • 

    Caspian Gull Larus cachinnans (monotypic)

  • • 

    Lesser Black-backed Gull Larus fuscus (polytypic, including fuscus, intermedius, graellsii, heuglini, taimyrensis, barabensis)

  • • 

    American Herring Gull Larus smithsonianus (polytypic, including smithsonianus, vegae, mongolicus)

  • • 

    Yellow-legged Gull Larus michahellis (polytypic, including michahellis, atlantis)

  • • 

    Armenian Gull Larus armenicus (monotypic)

  • • 

    Herring Gull Larus argentatus (polytypic, including argentatus, argenteus)

A manuscript explaining these decisions has been submitted to British Birds.


Generic arrangement of gulls

Two research programmes, one based on morphology (Chu 1998. Cladistics 14: 1–43) and another based primarily on mitochondrial DNA sequences (Crochet et al. 2000. J. Evol. Biol. 13: 47–57; Pons et al. 2005. Mol. Phylogen. Evol. 37: 686–699) have examined phylogenetic relationships of the entire group of gulls. Both studies indicate that the genus Larus, as currently defined [e.g. Voous 1977. List of Recent Holarctic Bird Species. Br. Ornithol. Union, London; Cramp & Simmons 1983. The Birds of the Western Palearctic. Vol. 3. Oxford UP, Oxford; Burger & Gochfield 1996. Gulls. In: del Hoyo, J., Elliot, A. & Sargatal, J. (eds.) Handbook of the Birds of the World. Vol. 3. Hoatzin to Auks. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona], is not monophyletic. These studies indicate that the generic limits of the gulls need revision.

Both studies indicated a separate position of Creagrus, Rissa, Xema, Pagophila from all other gulls, supporting the continued recognition of these genera, but also supported another well-defined clade (which includes Slender-billed Gull Larus genei, Bonaparte's Gull L. philadelphia and Black-headed Gull L. ridibundus) which is not the sister group to other gulls in Larus as currently defined. Both studies also resolved a sister-group relationship of Ross's Gull and Little Gull and their separate position from the main clade of gulls.

A taxonomic revision that would maintain monophyly of gull genera with minimum change to the British List would be to include all gulls in Larus, except those currently placed in Creagrus, Rissa, Xema and Pagophila. This arrangement however does not reflect the taxonomic information derived from the cited studies. Pons et al. (2005) in contrast suggested recognition of ten genera, requiring adoption of five new generic names: Chroicocephalus (which includes Slender-billed Gull, Bonaparte's Gull and Black-headed Gull); Saundersilarus (Saunder's Gull); Hydrocoloeus (Ross's and Little Gull); Leucophaeus (some of the New World 'hooded' gulls); Ichthyaetus (southern Palaearctic 'black-headed gulls'). Four of these putative genera have been recorded in Britain. Retention of separate genera for Little and Ross's Gull would be justifiable on the basis of the long branch lengths separating the two, which are comparable with those separating Xema and Pagophila.

For the purposes of the British List, the TSC recommends recognition of an intermediate taxonomy that adopts Chroicocephalus for the clade which includes Slender-billed Gull, Bonaparte's Gull and Black-headed Gull and adopts Hydrocoloeus for Little Gull, but does not change the generic status of other gull species, as follows:

  • • 

    Ivory Gull Pagophila eburnea

  • • 

    Sabine's Gull Xema sabini

  • • 

    Black-legged Kittiwake Rissa tridactyla

  • • 

    Slender-billed Gull Chroicocephalus genei

  • • 

    Bonaparte's Gull Chroicocephalus philadelphia

  • • 

    Black-headed Gull Chroicocephalus ridibundus

  • • 

    Little Gull Hydrocoloeus minutus

  • • 

    Ross's Gull Rhodostethia rosea

  • • 

    Laughing Gull Larus atricilla

  • • 

    Franklin's Gull Larus pipixcan

  • • 

    Mediterranean Gull Larus melanocephalus

  • • 

    Audouin's Gull Larus audouinii

  • • 

    Pallas's Gull Larus ichthyaetus

  • • 

    Mew Gull Larus canus

  • • 

    Ring-billed Gull Larus delawarensis

  • • 

    Lesser Black-backed Gull Larus fuscus

  • • 

    Herring Gull Larus argentatus

  • • 

    Yellow-legged Gull Larus michahellis

  • • 

    Caspian Gull Larus cachinnans

  • • 

    American Herring Gull Larus smithsonianus

  • • 

    Iceland Gull Larus glaucoides

  • • 

    Glaucous Gull Larus hyperboreus

  • • 

    Great Black-backed Gull Larus marinus

The Chroicocephalus gull clade is strongly supported by congruency between Pons et al. (2005) and the results of Chu (1998). The groups designated as 'hooded' and 'black-headed' gulls by Pons et al. (2005) and which may merit generic status were not found by Chu (1998), so further division within Larus s.s. is not recommended at this stage.