Saturday, 25 December 2010

Christmas birding 23rd - 25th Dec

More birding over the past couple of days. On 23rd, I went to Dogsthorpe Tip for a few hours. Amongst the many thousands of gulls present, there was a 1st-winter Caspian Gull (which I had on the tip briefly about 10:30), and then this bird:

To me, this a fairly 'good' Glaucous x Herring Gull hybrid, and has arrived with large numbers of argentatus which look like they have come from a long way north. In my opinion, there are a few features that rule out the leucistic Herring Gull theory:
  • boldly-patterned greater coverts and tertials
  • extensive pale chevrons on primaries
  • scapular pattern lacks obvious chevrons
  • tail band is weak and broken
  • head and bill structure, at times, looking quite Glaucous-like
  • 'broken' eyering (see final picture)

BLGP and Baston Fen continue to hold 8 Bewick's and 3 Whooper Swans:

... and were joined by two lovely adult European White-fronted Geese, one of which is below:

All the wildfowl above are still present as of today (25th December), as well as good numbers of Wigeon and the odd raptor and wader.

Season's greeting to all.


  1. good stuff josh , any pics of the Caspain.

    This gull does seem a potbellied gull , hybrids are difficult

  2. Afraid not Jeff as they were actively tipping so gulls always on the move each time the bulldozer went through! Will be back in the week so hopefully some more pics then. Merry Christmas.