Adult Bonaparte’s Gull, Erith

The Sunday before last I was driving away from a fairly quiet morning gulling in the Crayford area when I got a text from Dante, “We just found a Bonies, Erith Pier” my heart sunk as i couldn’t go and see the bird and having been there myself at low tide that morning I’d have loved to have been there for the find. Hey ho, and very happy for Rich and Dante picking it up on call! Today was the first chance I’ve had to go ad see it and despite it not been reported for over a week it came to bread at the end of the pier and performed a treat, often being the closest bird and calling on a few occasions.  A truly wonderful bird.




Strong sunlight gave the bird an alien impression when flying into the light, very distinctive translucency in the wing.


Other than that I’ve seen a couple of Caspian Gulls since the last blog post. below a pic of the Polish regular p:985 from Crayford.


…and below some shots from Erith a week a so ago. Firstly German Ringed Caspian from Laßig colony (quite a nice German bird)




Followed by this nice 2nd winter which seems to be new to the area.



and this slim dark 1st winter Casp, which has been seen at Crayford before.



Finally a big ol’ 1w Yellow-Legged Gull. 




Ringed Adult and Repeat Casp at Crayford

3 Hours at Crayford Viridor today with Dante and I closely missed a/the Glaucous Gull which may or may not have been the bird from last weekend. I picked up an Adult Caspian Gull which turned out to be Ringed. Green XUDU from Germany, ringed as a chick in 2013, have a look at the history below.



The only other Caspian Gull was this one which was loafing on jolly farmers and also seen on the roof at Viridor. 



Dante recognised it from my photos of a bird at Dungeness and low and behold… it is the same bird! (dunge pic below)


Another brief but enjoyable trip to the delightful Viridor Recycling centre and its scenically stunning surrounding area.

The day previous to this I visited Laurence Pitcher on the south coast, we had a look at what (at the time) was a suppressed Humes Leaf Warbler,which only really the Sussex locals seemed to know about, despite it being in a busy public park. A new bird for me and very interesting. I couldn’t believe the call and how pied wagtail like it was, no pics as it was a bugger to pin down. Earlier that morning we checked Newhaven Harbour for Glaucous Gulls of which there was a juv on the beach.





Crayford Glaucous plus a handful o’ Casps

Dante and I had 2 hours looking at Crayford this afternoon. We’ve recently been doing the sites on foot, rotating around the 3/4 places to stand and check through the loafing or feeding birds between Viridor, Serco, Jolly farmers and the roofs in between and I feel were getting more covered.  5 Caspain gulls and a juv Glaucous Gull were recorded amoung a huge amount of (very mobile) gulls .


The Glauc, that dante picked up on the Serco roof was really the highlight and was seen in flight a few times but i never really got close.  At Viridor, there was many times more the usual amount of ‘stuff’ on the ‘piles’ and the Gulls were going mad for it. We had three 1st winter Caspians feeding on it all, one of which (not photographed here) I had the week previous but these two below are new birds it seems.



Above and below birds are different individuals, 2 pics of each. They’re both great looking birds in my opinion.



Below is 3rd winter ringed Casp ‘G0UT’ again, who featured in last weeks Caspfest. 


The following pic shows its developing primary pattern despite the shitty photo, it looks great with those nice long grey tongues for a bird this age.


Finally, Polish Ringed regular P895, I’m pretty sure I picked up this bird once or twice in flight during the session and haven’t added to the total incase I’m right


I think Crayford will continue to turn up decent birds from now till april so expect a weekly set of these kind of photos like it or not!