Blog

Fri 30th July 2010

Posted on July 31, 2010 at 1:05 PM

birds : Yesterday morning I took time out to have a look at the gull flock that congregates on Chouet beach by the rubbish tip. I have spent a few days 'genning' up on juvenile Yellow-legged Gull as I am determined to find one here on Guernsey. There are plenty of sites on the English side of the Channel that get plenty, so one would think that there were at least a few here - but I've never ever seen a juvenile locally. And again today, there were no obvious juvenile Yellow-leggeds, but there weren't a great deal of juvenile gulls at all. I did find two older Yellow-legged Gulls though.

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adult, or almost-adult Yellow-legged Gull

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3rd-summer Yellow-legged Gull

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I am happy that these birds are Yellow-legged Gulls but large gull identification is so complicated it verges on impossible sometimes. Both birds' legs were bright enough yellow and both had reddish-orange orbital eye rings, and they were pretty large and long-winged. Even though it was very difficult to make a judgement in the sunny conditions, the mantles of both birds were only debatably darker than the Herring Gulls present which has been a feature of most of the Yellow-legged Gulls reported in Guernsey recently. This may be due to: 1) The YLGs that we usually get are from quite a pale-backed population; 2) The local Herring Gulls seem a touch darker than UK birds, less blue-grey; 3) Many of these birds with yellow legs may actually be from a hybrid population.

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I also did an hour's seawatch off Chouet since there was an inshore breeze. Two Fulmars, a Manx and a Balearic Shearwater were seen. Also a juvenile Med Gull was on Vazon beach.

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Cormorant, Chouet

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moths : Trapping continues to be poor with nothing very interesting. I noticed some massive stands of Ragwort in the 'vacant lot' across the road - at least a metre tall - and I thought that there must be some Cinnabar larvae feeding on them. And there was - hundreds!

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Cinnabar larvae on Ragwort

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I had a photo and a note published in the latest issue of "Atropos" - the journal for moth, butterfly and dragonfly. It was about a very unusual form of Brimstone I had in the trap one morning.

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nonsense : N.B. - Please click both of the below videos to play at the same time.

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[the video upload system of the host-website does not seem to be working properly at the moment so I have not been able to upload this video (slideshow) I created. So I have had to put it on via YouTube. But YouTube now has a program which detects unlicensed songs and refuses to play them, and so has 'muted' the audio track. So it's complicated, but just play both at once - preferably click the second one first]

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SORTED : CLICK THIS LINK FOR VIDEO

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Categories: 2010 Summer