Sunday, 9 February 2014

Kumlien's Gull

I have to be honest and say that I could not have identified this bird by myself. To me it looks like a juvenile Iceland Gull. It is only when I am told that it is a Kumlien's that I can start to see the identifying characteristics.

It was located on the golf course on the western side of the river Arun at Littlehampton. My first problem was that it was a long way off, probably 130 Metres, and settled in a hollow in the middle of the Golf Course. The head and bill looked different but there was a long wait until it moved and we were able to get better views.

Juvenile Kumlien's Gull settled down in a hollow. All black bill evident in this picture

It eventually took to the air but I could only managed to get a couple of reasonable record shots and both of these with a huge crane in the background.

Showing signs of a darker tail band

In flight - Dark grey primaries with pale edges evident

Apparently it should also be showing darker outer webs to the outer primaries. I think I need to do a bit more reading on that one.

and back on land

A great bird to see and all credit to the people that found it. I did not count them but there must have been over a thousand gulls over the golf course and beach and it takes some good skills to pick this out from all the rest.

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