Monday, 2 September 2013

Black-headed Gull - Yellow ACY6

I recently got a text message from Wilton Farrelly, who had seen a colour-ringed black-headed gull at Kinnegar Shore in Belfast Lough, asking if it was one of our study birds.

The bird in question was yellow ACY6 and while, sadly, it isn't from the Northern Ireland project, it turned out to be much more exciting!

Photo by Wilton Farrelly
Photo by Wilton Farrelly

A quick check of the brilliant cr-birding website told me that this bird was one from a German project run by Jorg Hadasch, so I forwarded Jorg's details to Wilton.

Jorg promptly replied to inform us that this bird was ringed as a pulli (chick) in the Leese/Stolzenau region of Kreis Nienburg, Niedersachsen in Germany on 17 June 2011 and that this is the first time it has been re-sighted.

Red - Leese/Stolzenau, Germany
Blue - Kinnegar Shore, Belfast Lough, NI

A movement of 1016km, this again supports the evidence that our wintering population of black-headed gulls here is augmented by birds from continental Europe.

Thanks to Wilton for reporting the bird and sending the photo and to Jorg for the information.

I have also received word of another colour-ringed gull in Belfast last week, which would add yet another country to the list of where our wintering gulls originated, but I'm just waiting on confirmation.  Keep an eye on the blog in the next couple of days for news about that bird.


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