Thames Casps old and new… for me

Thames barrier park for 2 hours before Low tide and Dantes spangling 3rd Winter Casp was the first bird I put my bins on. It was Keen on the bread but not willing to get into good light I enjoyed watching it through bins as you dont see many 3rd winters.


Below, an awful flight shot but shows p4 mark and broad band on p5 well enough.


This apparent 1w Argentatus came to the bread briefly



Gull numbers were pretty low and there were just a few black heads at Lyle park. I was hoping to catch up with my beloved Lyle but sadly it was not to be. Over to the O2 and within a few mins I had a first winter Casp that i didn’t recognise. I watched it in flight mostly as when it pitched down it did so quite distantly.





It does seem to have a similar feel to the two rung birds Dante and I have seen on the thames, both rung in east Germany in mixed colonies and I wouldn’t be surprised if this bird was from a similar place, in fact it is rung but only with a metal ring which i couldn’t read. This just in! Apparently tis bird was actually seen back in December at Thames Barrier Park – funny how they come and go.




Below, good old ‘mucky’ one of the O2’s regular 1st Winter Caspian gulls was lurkin about too.


Below, both casps together.


I’d heard that Lyle had been seen at East India dock so tried my luck there but only had the weirdo Black head that we see occasionally.



And this subtle 2nd winter Herring which in flight I took to be a first winter Argie with that tail pattern, It wasn’t until it landed on the water I could see all scaps and coverts were replaced but scaps lacking many adult grey types.  I love 2nd winter herrings.


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