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3 Caspian Gull at Prisorlee Lake

8th December 2019

Salop is having a great run of Caspian Gulls right now with maybe up to four birds all at Prisorlee Lake with a single at nearby Trench Pool. Also, there’s been a probable hybrid with Yellow-legged Gull and Jo and I have managed to connect with all of them including this 3rd winter that we had today!!

When we arrived in Salop four days ago, although there had been up to four Caspian Gull visiting Prisorlee lake in the last month, we was only excepting to see the long staying 1st winter that is almost seen on a daily basis at the lake and we have observed it everyday since we arrived in the county. Also, on the first day we were here, we got the probable 2nd winter Yellow-leggedxCaspian Gull hybrid and turned up either the Prisorlee Lake or another 1st winter Caspian Gull in the pre-roost at Trench Pool with an adult Yellow-legged Gull. It was so damn dark when we picked up the Caspian Gull on the pool in the roost to make out if it was a different individual. So, already in a our first few hours, we had seen one, maybe 2 Caspian Gull and the hybrid! Great start but things just got better.

Three days ago at Prisorlee Lake, we got the 1st winter Caspian Gull, a 2nd winter Yellow-legged and an adult Lesser black-backed GullxHerring Gull hybrid. The following day we arrived at the lake, mid-morning, there were some 200 Lesser black-backed, 6 Great black-backed, a different 2nd winter Yellow-legged Gull and the 1st winter Caspian Gull. Where are all these gulls coming from? After an hour, as no one had checked out if the gulls were loafing around in the fields next to the Telford Crematorium this winter, we thought it would be worth a look. There, in the horse fields were over 1000 large gulls with nearly all them being Lesser black-backed Gull. They were pretty distant and viewing was difficult through a thick hedge, peeking through the smallest gap we could find. We didn’t have a scope and I only bins and we would of had two pairs but Jo misunderstood me when I said ‘Don’t forget your bins?’ I was trying to work out what that clatter sound was in the back of the car while I was driving. What I could make out through the hedge were a single 2nd winter Yellow-legged Gull, only 30 Herring Gull but 11 Great black-backed Gull. The latter species was the highest count so far this year in Salop. this is nothin to two year ago when the tip was operational and I had an impressive 60 GBBG in the same fields. Some 100 more gulls came in but I flushed everything by trying to break the hedge down in any way I could so I could see more of the gulls. They were heading off towards Prisorlee Lake and so did we. On arrival, it was great to catch up with Lathem and Janice, who were already there, and with in ten minutes I had relocated what I thought was John Reeves 3rd winter Caspian Gull. Dan from Solihull had joined us and I had to shout Lathem back as he was leaving, as I had refound the 1st winter Caspian Gull sat on one of the buoys. It wasn’t long until the two birds were together and although all the other gulls were at reasonable, if not close range, these two gulls were 100 mile away on the far side of the lake! Why? I got a call from Mom telling us that dinner was ready and she needed the car and her bins.

After we had left, Tom Lowe arrived and re identified the third winter Caspian Gull as a 2nd winter. Thanks again mate.

This 1st winter Caspian Gull that’s hanging out at Prisorlee Lake at the moment

Three days ago this hybrid adult Lesser black-backedxHerring Gull was also present on the lake

Prisorlee Lake scored again with the 1st winter Caspian Gull being joined by a 2nd winter Caspian Gull two days ago. The first time that I’ve observed two side by side in the county and the 18th November was the last time the 2nd winter was seen at the lake.

Today we stopped off at Prisorlee Lake on our ways to Venus Pool to find bloody boats sailing on the lake. However there were still some 20 Lesser black-backed Gull on the water and a 3rd winter Caspian Gull!! What is goin on? The third, possibly fourth Caspian Gull, that we have observed in the four days of being in Salop. The 3rd winter was only there briefly and flew out north. After seeing nothing at Venus Pool, we returned to Prisorlee Lake to find a 1st winter Yellow-legged Gull roosting with 30 LBBG and the odd Herring Gull. Then a look at Trench found an adult Yellow-legged Gull with only 2 LBBG and an adult Common Gull to end another good day of gulling in Telford.

This 3rd winter Caspian Gull at Prisorlee lake was our third, possibly fourth, we have observed in four days of arriving in Salop!! This is the third winter that John Reeves had only two days ago at the same site.

1st winter Yellow-legged Gull roosting at Prisorlee Lake

Followed by this different adult Yellow-legged Gull, to the individual we had three days ago, in the pre-roost at Trench Pool with an adult Common Gull.

At Trench Pool Jo took this photo of the Greylag Geese.

As well as this Great Spotted Woodpecker, Blue Tit and Chaffinch at Venus Pool. The only bird of note here was a Green Sandpiper that I only heard although a Bewick’s Swan was seen earlier in the morning by other observers.

Author: Kris Webb 10

I love to throw sticks at trees! I also can’t get enough of music! I also blog about my observations on Scilly and wherever I go around the world and what’s sometimes on my mind. I’ve visited over 30 countries and some more times than once. I’ve worked and volunteered in Nepal, USA, Peru, Gambia, Costa Rica, 3x Australia, and refugee camps in Palestine The profile image is one I took while in Palestine of a brave Israeli holding high the Palestinian flag in front of the Israeli Offensive Forces during protests in Belin

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