Wednesday, March 21, 2018

American Herring Gull

I made it back to Kilkee early this morning to see the American Herring Gull Larus argentatus smithsonianus , found two days ago by Niall Keogh and Brian Power,  before departing to head to work in south Waterford.  Gull numbers were low along the seafront and only a handful of immatures were gathering at the river outflow. There was no sign of the bird, so I had to go up town to John Nolan at Nolan's Deli, for a coffee and to secure a bag of stale bread to chuck out to attracted the gulls down.   Within minutes birds were wheeling about and just like magic the smith's appeared in the dull early morning light from some location in the middle of Kilkee high street. This is a second county record. It has been ten years since the first appeared brifly back near Cloghaun Lough where Finbarr McGabhann and myself managed to locate a bird in fields with a dozen Herring Gulls, and managed to snap off about three shots out the car window before that bird vanished out of sight.  See last shot below.

Immature American Herring Gull at Kilkee John N Murphy
Immature American Herring Gull at Loop Head in 2008 John N Murphy