Gullmas 2015/16: Part Two

Mediterranean Gull Ichthyaetus melanocephalus Tophill Low NR, East Yorkshire December 2015

The second eight-day period of Gullmas at Tophill Low NR, East Yorkshire continued to provide Mediterranean Gull Ichthyaetus melanocephalus, with a minimum of 10-12 individuals recorded on D reservoir between December 27th and January 3rd.

Mediterranean Gull Ichthyaetus melanocephalus Tophill Low NR, East Yorkshire December 2015

A total of 4-5 1st winter birds appeared over the period, with a single 2nd winter putting in several appearances.

Mediterranean Gull Ichthyaetus melanocephalus Tophill Low NR, East Yorkshire January 2016

Meanwhile, adults featured quite prominently with 5-6 individuals noted from photographs and field observations. Over the entire 16 day Gullmas period, a total of 12-15 birds were seen, as the breakdown below shows, while the mean roost size per night, involving all species present, was 7,600.

  • 4-5 1st winters
  • 2-3 2nd winters
  • 6-7 adults

Mediterranean Gull Ichthyaetus melanocephalus Tophill Low NR, East Yorkshire December 2015

During the same period 12 months ago, only 4-5 individuals of this species were noted, when the roost averaged 12,590-13,990 birds per night.

Other highlights during the second period included three Yellow-legged Gulls Larus michahellis, taking the total over the Gullmas period to five – almost identical to the 12 months ago, while the strong winds from the southeast on January 3rd brought a flock of 13 Little Gull Hydrocoloeus minutus to the roost, which is (without checking the published annual reports) probably the highest, or one of the highest, winter counts in Tophill site history.

January 1st saw the annual year listing day… check out the official website for the latest news.

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