I visited Stewartby Lake for the gull roost again y’day evening from 6.50 to 7.50pm. Although the gulls were disturbed from time to time by water-skiers heading directly at the roost – completely contrary to their permitted zones – I found amongst a roost of circa one and half thousand gulls a splendid juvenile Caspian Gull already assuming some first-winter features. I found this gull within a few minutes of my arrival and, having satisfied myself as to its identity, rang SCB, PH and NW plus Rare Bird Alert who quickly broadcast the news over the pagers. Pip was able to join me from around 7.30 and we watched the bird until dusk fell. We separately and quickly relocated this striking gull when the flock flew up and resettled. I took a few very distant (optimistic) photos of this bird and will send them to RIB/SCB shortly with a few field notes of the bird.
At last light there were at least 1060 Lesser Black-backs present and at least 13 adult/near adult Yellow-legged Gulls plus a juvenile amongst them. A few hundred B H Gulls were also present but I didn’t see any Common Gulls or G B Backs and only a couple of Herring Gulls – I was though concentrating on the Caspo for nearly all of my visit.
This is the second Caspian Gull in Beds this autumn following the juvenile identified by SCB at Gypsy Lane East and the adjacent G M Growers fields from 18th to at least 22nd August during when also seen by a few others inc myself.