Sunday, 4 December 2016

Another Norwegian bird returns

I've heard of an influx of white-winged gulls but never "white-ringed" gulls, however, this is what appears to have happened recently, with another white colour-ringed bird reported! This time at Lurgan Park in Co. Armagh.

Photo by Suzanne Belshaw

Another returning bird, first recorded here by Stephen Hewitt back in 2013, J4P4 was ringed as a chick at Stanga, Råde, Østfold in 2006. It wasn't recorded again until it was recaptured in 2011 and the colour-ring added.

The addition of the colour-ring has generated multiple sightings and it has subsequently been recorded at Oslo (2012); Solgård avfallsplass, Moss, Østfold (2013); Lurgan, Co. Armagh (winter 2013-14 and 2014-15); and back in Norway during the breeding season in 2015 and 2016.

J4P4 at Lurgan, March 2015
Photo by Kev Kirkham-Brown

Suzanne photographed the bird back at Lurgan a couple of days ago where it probably also spent last winter, but went undetected. 

Frustratingly for Suzanne, there was another ringed bird present but unfortunately it wasn't colour-ringed and she was unable to read the number on the metal ring.

Photo by Suzanne Belshaw

Thanks to the colour-ring, and the fantastic Norwegian colour-ringed birds website; we know where this bird was born (blue below), where it now breeds (red below) and where it winters (Lurgan Park!). 

Blue (Stanga, Råde, Østfold) - colony where born
Red (Sondre Langara) 
- colony where now breeds

Many thanks to Suzanne for the report and her photos.

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