Sunday, 29 June 2014

Third (and final) BHG study colony visited

Last Sunday morning, a small team of us headed out to Copeland Bird Observatory to concentrate on ringing Black-headed and Common Gulls.

Last year, we didn't ring the small gulls in the colony on CBO (we did ring on Mew Island though - see here) as the terns and gulls were all mixed together and we didn't want to cause any unnecessary disturbance. This year, however, they're a bit more segregated which gave us and opportunity to ring.

To keep disturbance to a minimum though, we collected small numbers of gulls up and took them to one side and ringed them in one of the many gullies on the island.

It seems we were slightly too late for the Black-headed Gulls as many young present were already on the wing and in the end I was happy to add 19 new colour-ringed birds to the tally for 2014.

The weather was superb and we got great views north towards County Antrim (I can see my house...almost!) and eastwards over Mew Island.

There is currently work on-going to update the lighthouse on Mew Island. It will soon loose the traditional flash, which has been a feature of the County Down seascape since 1884, to be replaced by a simple flashing LED.

Many thanks to Niall Waterman and Wes Smyth for some of the photos. Blogger won't let me label them for some reason!

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