Sunday, 11 January 2009

Glaucous-Winged Gull

Saturday 10th January. Saltholme Pools, Cleveland, 10:50 - 11:40.

Unfortunately, an unforseen technical problem means I have no photies for today. Not a problem with the camera, just the eejit using it (me!), who accidentally deleted all the pics from the camera! Where's Homer gone? Ah, here he is...........

A shame, but just seeing the Glaucous-Winged Gull more than made up for that disappointment. I'd rather pull a daft stunt like that now than in India in a few weeks time. Just out of interest, I wonder how many professional rare bird photographers (or Snowy Owl flushers) have ever done that? (What? I can get away with that, can't I? I thought flushing was the norm for Snowy Owl fieldcraft these days?)

Anyway, back to the gull. Quite a gentle looking thing really. The rounded head and dark eye reminded me of Common Gull a bit. Nothing like a Glaucous Gull at all, which is a real hard-nut of a gull. The Vinnie Jones of gulls in fact.

Loads of photos are on the net now, including Surfbirds. Just how I saw it, stood on the ice with the other gulls.

Before heading off to my sister's house, I thought I'd fit a couple of other places in. Seal Sands was rather quiet with a pair of Red-Breasted Mergansers and 4 Black-Tailed Godwits, amongst more usual winter estuarine waders, being the highlights.

A look round Hartlepool Headland produced 17 Purple Sandpipers (I had some decent photos of them as well, sigh, never mind), 2 female Common Scoter, 13 Eider and a Rock Pipit.

Sunday 11th January, Saltholme Pools, Dormans Pool, Reclamation Pond, 10:45 - 12:00.

I know what you're thinking, "he didn't really go". Well, if you were in any doubt that I wasn't there:

Saltholme pools with the backdrop of the old Billingham ICI works. Much milder today and all the ice had melted. No sign of the Glaucous-Winged Gull either, which wasn't an entire surprise. There are three landfill sites nearby and like at Stubbers Green, they don't work on a Sunday. Apparently the last sign of it was about half an hour after I left yesterday, so actually I feel really lucky to have seen it.

There was a Peregrine knocking about however. Not the best photo I've ever taken, but you can just about make it out.

No sign of any large gulls on Dormans Pool. Or on the Reclamation Pond pictured below, with the backdrop of the Seal Sands oil refinery.


Kay said...

Shame about the photos....ah well you have your memories eh and what a bird to have on your list!!

Glad you got it as I was a bit worried for you after reading ASBO Archie's 'Top Tips' :)

Richard Powell said...

The Aviarazzi would'nt have been a problem on Saturday. Unless they wanted to go through the ice.

Anonymous said...

Well done on getting the Gull Richard. Shame about the photos, i didnt even try whilst i was up there.

Hws the yearlist going?

Phil (sylvia)

Richard Powell said...

Cheers Phil. As for the year list. I'm only keeping a note of a county list for this year.

Up to 81 so far. How seriously I'll take it I'm not yet sure. Knowing me not very!

Anonymous said...

Who gives a flying fff.... Laridae about rare Gulls... THE MIGHTY T'MUFFFF have just thrashed the smelly Brewers 2-1 in the Birmingham Senior Cup. In your face Rich! :o)

Lots of love from Archie the Lamb x x x

Richard Powell said...

You know Arch, that's the biggest laugh I've ever had from this blog! It's obvious that Roy McFarland's doing the business. Glad I didn't go now!

I don't know what it is about Burton v Tamworth games, but usually, over the years (epecially when Donovan Gethfield was involved!), it involved a reet good hiding for us!

BTW, see you in the Rootball League! Oh, after we've won the FA Trophy as well (remember Burscough?)!

Richard Powell said...

I don't know what the Rootball League is (probably a Beetroot fixation). I meant Football League of course!

Anonymous said...


Oooohhhh Donovan Gethfield, he had thighs like Californian Redwoods! :o)

That Trophy Final was fixed, scousers bribing the ref & stuff!

Arch the Lamb x x x