Mediterranean Gull. Pete Woodruff.
Well, this photograph has definitely been on Birds2blog before but I'm not too worried about that as it happens to be one of my better efforts of taking a decent pic and illustrates the bird seen regularly last year off Boadway at Morecambe. I don't like birds being given abbreviated names, but for the sake of these notes I'll do that here.
I'm not really interested in accurate statistics at the moment and often aren't, but something like 14 Med Gulls have already been found in the past few days in our area - and just beyond - seven of which I found. All birds to me are brilliant but I must confess are so in varying degrees, but the Med Gull is well up the list of truly smart birds and its always a great pleasure to find one turning up in view through your telescope, in adult breeding plumage I have to refer to this bird as immaculate in its appearance.
The Med Gull has seen a significant range expansion through the 1960's and birds were present at a site in Hampshire in 1966/67 and breeding was proved in 1968. Numbers rose to almost 500 pairs at 34 sites by 2006 although the vast majority were at just three sites on the south coast of England. The Med Gull was a very rare bird in this country prior to the 1950's but is now regarded as widespread, especially along the coast of SE England, but can be regularly found in small numbers at inland gull roosts, and three-figure numbers are regular reported at Folkestone in Kent and from the Isle of White. Interesting that as I write, the RBA pager service alerts me to 5 adult Med Gulls at Walton Park in Liverpool whilst at the same time there has been NO Lancashire birds reported by this service at all today and the time now being 4.45pm, so things not picking up yet in the world of birds in Lancashire at least.
I recently acquired the book above to add to my ever increasing reference library, I strongly recommend this one to you if you have an interest in keeping abreast of the status of our birds.
Another one of those 'excellent' photographs I keep coming across during my trawling of the Internet and one definitely not taken by me but with no credit required. This image was taken recently at Cockersands and shows a female Marsh Harrier about to pounce on a Brown Hare of which this area has good numbers and counts in excess of 20 individuals are not unusual with my personal maximum being of 30 plus on one visit to the area. However, I'm told by the observer/photographer of this event that on this occasion the creature got away with its life.
I may well be trying my damnedest to keep a blog alive and enjoying it in the process but....I'D SOONER BE BIRDING!!