Bottlenose Whale

Busy gulls - Sørvágur

It has been a busy weekend. Saturday afternoon I did a little birding. I checked Toftir, Rúnavík and Toftavatn. All in all there were 57 Iceland Gulls and 5 Kumlien’s Gulls present.

No too good looking Glaucous Gull

Saturday night the ornithological society on the Faroes had their annual “get together”. I was asked to tell about rare birds on the Faroes in 2011, tell a little about the Iceland Gull-invasion and show some pics. It all went very well and we had a lovely night together.

Proabably a Kumlien's Gull with minimal markings - a 4w

Yesterday I had a little more time birding. First I checked Tórshavn, where I found 22 Iceland Gulls and 3 Kumlien’s Gulls. In Kollafirði there were 25 Iceland Gulls, but they were rather distant, so I couldn’t id any Kumlien’s Gulls for sure.

Dead Bottlenose Whale at Leynasandur

At Mjáuvøtn my first Common Mergenser of the year was present along with some Tufted Ducks. At nearby Leynasandur a dead Bottlenose Whale had washed a shore, so I went to check it out.

Rodmund sent a sms to me about a putative 2cy American Herring Gull in Sørvágur. Well, I was only 20 minutes drive away, so I went to look for it. It turned out that he had seen it the day before, and I couldn’t relocate the particular bird among the dark Herring Gulls.

Adult Kumlien's Gull with very faint markings - next to impossible to see in the field.

But 88 Iceland Gulls and 7 Kumlien’s Gulls were a nice by-catch. One of the adult Kumlien’s Gulls was nice and well-marked. Just the way I like them to look. No doubt about either thayeri or glaucoides.

2w Brownie - with such colours it should be a kumlieni, but the iris is pale, there is no contrast between inner and outer primaries and p5-p10 are not obviously dark-tipped...

Same 2w as above - on the water it looks kumlienish

Same 2w as above - outer webs on all the primaries are darker than inner webs.

Well marked adult and the brown 2w behind.

Wing-shot of the well-marked adult Kumlien's Gull

Flight-shot of the bird above

A somewhat puzzling Glaucous Gull - it even has dark outer webs on the outer primaries and these are dark-tipped. If Glaucous Gulls can look like this could pure glaucoides do it too?

Same Glaucous Gull as above. Note the heavy bill, less rounded head and shorter primary projection than Iceland Gulls. In the field it was also much bigger than the Iceland Gulls. Even on this picture you can see the colour tones on the primaries.

Faint markings on p8-10 - so probably a pale Kumlien's Gull but I dare not say it for sure.



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