Saturday, 13 October 2018

October 2018 - Sean Walsh park changes

October 21st

Long walk on Sandymount Strand this afternoon.  1,000 of gulls but not much in the way of rings.  The Herring Gull Red 672:D was photographed at distance, enough to make out the code but record shot only.  I read 3 Oystercatchers from the Dublin Bay project because there was little else.


Colour Ringed Oystercatcher LF - Ringed in 2013 as an Adult

Colour Ringed Oystercatcher CF was ringed in 2013
Oystercatcher SP (No photo, I reported in on 28/12/2014 but don't appear to have any details)

With nothing around I spotted a metal on a Black-headed Gull and decided to have a go.  I walked around it in a 20m circle and got all the code even though it walked twice, but never more than a yard.

Black-headed Gull EX15842

EX15842 - Poor light but readable!  Ringed in 2010 - awaiting details

I finally got my second CR Gull of the afternoon, a Polish Black-headed Gull T9PC, so far away.  It has been a while since I recorded this individual.  There has been only one sighting in the last year and that also was on this beach.


October 15th

Things in Sean Walsh Park are gradually returning to normal.  Four Ducks, 60 Black-headed Gulls, 1 Common Gull, 1 med Gull and 1 Juvenile Herring Gull were at the lake with the fountain.  Numbers are still low but better than the 0 birds at the start of the month with the fountain back on after a 10 year break!  It seem slightly less powerful today?

27H0 and 2ACA were also back.



I also checked out the other end of the park at the Stadium and 2A88 was present.  This time it wasn't in the long grass and a better photo was obtained.


October 14th

After the storm a glorious day!  Went for a walk on Booterstown Strand.  When I arrived at the spit, there were 1,000's of Oystercatchers in front of me.  I settled down and scanned the Gulls first.  I had only just started recording Oystercatcher rings when some one walked through the roosting flocks.  I had recorded only 5.  I got a 6th one later on but should have got a lot more
CR Oystercatcher XC
They were tightly packed and as usual 50% were standing on the un-coded leg!
Oystercatchers - 2 on Uncoded legs.  DD and ZI standing on Coded legs

Sandymount Strand - 1,000's of Oystercatchers
The Gulls and waders having all taken flight I went back to the Marsh Stream outfall.  As luck would have it many landed right in front of me.  The Polish Black-headed Gull T17A was ringed as a Juvenile in 2014 and has been coming here ever since, but it is only my 2nd sighting.


They just kept landing.  But not one Red ringed Gull to be seen!!



The next colour ringed Gull to land was a Mediterranean Gull and one I hadn't seen before!  I await the report but probably Belguim.  REPORT IN:  Ringed in Belguim in 2011.   Why I hadn't see it before?  Colour ring only added in 2018!


Med Gull 2X3A I am familiar with as I have seen it over the Summer in Tallaght.


However, my bird of the day and what delayed me was a Colour Ringed Godwit standing on one leg!  Half a code is no use.  I waited and even when he walked a couple of paces the 2nd leg seemed devoid of rings.  Eventually the Sun went behind the buildings and as last it moved.  This is an individual I first recorded in February 2014.  I have re-sighted it since but always on the North side of town around Bull Island.


BLKWT-RL:O//Bm-LL:ON.  (Right leg Orange above, Blue below and metal  Left leg Orange over black above)


October 13th

At Heuston Station the Great Black-backed Gull 1LL was present.  It is the 4th sighting in 7 years and all at this location.

Larus Marinus BW 1LL


Ben Madigan Park is always good but this morning the grass was a bit too long.  However, 036:D was on the goal posts.  Ringed in 2018 at a hospital in Dublin.


Herring Gull Red 036:D

11th October


With all the changes in Sean Walsh Park, I have spent more time at the Stadium end where no work has been carried out.  Gull numbers were over the 100 and among them this yellow ring.  I had to wait to get the first digit.  Yellow[2A88].  Ringed North of London as a Juvenile. A First sighting since ringed.

7th October


Bray Harbour.  No joy in looking for our Red rings.  However, first colour ring was a Juvenile Med. Last seen in Dun Laoghaire.  Nice to see it's range.


There were 2 other Coloured ringed Gulls, both Black-headed Gulls.  The Danish Gull 9MT was new to me but only ringed in 2018, apparently a Bray Harbour regular


The Black Lithuanian Rings certainly don't stand out!  However, I eventually spotted 615P.  It is the first sighting in 2018.


October 3rd

Just wrapping up the Swan Sightings for the RAS.  I had recorded CBLX at Sean Walsh Park but it was probably CBLK.  Confirming the sighting was a surprise.


CBLX was ringed in September 2017.  This was a first confirmed sighting since them!

October 2nd


With no Gulls in Sean Walsh Park, well hardly any.  Lake 5 usually holds 200 - 250 Black Headed Gulls but since the restarting of the fountain this number is around 10 - 15.  I went to the Stadium Lakes and the numbers were slightly higher than expected and among them was E5VA!  This is the 82nd sighting of this Dutch Gull in Sean Walsh Park since it first appeared in 2012 as a Juvenile


October 1st Sean Walsh Park revamp / clean up


Major changes in Sean Walsh Park.  The big lake was drained during the summer and all the mud and silt dug out.  There was a huge amount of rubbish and it needed to be cleaned, but the lake will take a few years for the biodiversity to recover.  Next year the number of flies, larvae, fish etc will be way down and I will have to see how it effects the bird life.

The final part of the clean up, which also included removing all the scrub under the tree, the fountain was turned back on.  It does look nice, but the Swans, Ducks and Gulls are wary of change and have abandoned this lake all together.  The number of Black-headed Gulls should be about 250+ and bird numbers including Swans, ducks, moorhens and other gulls should over 300.  Today there were none. I've never seen the lake so devoid of life.  It will be interesting to see how long it takes before they return!

Sean Walsh Park, Lake 5.  Very pretty but no birds!


Sean Walsh Park, last month, Black-headed Gull numbers starting to build

Saturday, 1 September 2018

September - Scottish Herring Gull Recovery

30th September 

Passing Sandyford Industrial Estate I spotted a Dutch Black-headed Gull.  I took a this record shot but before I got close it flew!  Oh well, ring was readable. ECR4.  Ringed in 2015 and first sighted in Dublin in 2016.


29th September

Grangecastle Business Park for my lunchtime walk today and again Swans were the objective.  However I did spot a Herring Gull with a Red ring!  Despite the rain and the distance, 656:D was read.  Another Urban Gull from the Dáil.  The gulls from the Dáil seem to like this park!


28th September

Gull numbers are growing in Sean Walsh Park.  27H0, 2ACA and the Swedish Juvenile 6456000 are daily sightings.  However stopping at the Stadium I spotted a red ring.  This Herring Gull is an Urban Gull from the City Center and this is a first sighting.


23rd September

No colour rings at Bray today except for CR Swans.  However, I was here for Swan Rings.  As the end of the month approaches, so does the end of this years RAS.  I am below the number I expected to sighted, perhaps he hard winter has taken it's toll.  One new to add to this years survival statistics, they all count in making the statistics as accurate as possible.

Stopped at Sandymount Strand on the way home.  I got the tide wrong but I did get one Red ring.  097:D was ringed in 2017 and this was the first sighting in 2018


21st September

Today in Sean Walsh park I spotted a Metal on a Black Headed Gull.  The ring looked Swedish and I was right.  6430814 is not due back for 2 weeks and it wasn't standing in the correct location being 10 meters from where I expect it to be.  Out with the camera and 40 frames later a new Adult!  In the 5 years I have been monitoring this park I haven't recorded this one before.  Time will tell but it is probably just passing through.

Sean Walsh Park, Tallaght.  6434718 Stockholm Scheme, Sweden

Black-headed Gull 6434718 - New ring in the park!


20th September

On September 9th I recorded a Herring Gull GV65109 at Bullock Harbour in Dublin.  As it was not a Club ring I assumed it may be from further North, Maybe Isle of Man.  However it is from much further North!


Ringed in the Highlands of Scotland, Eilean da Chuain, nr Morar, Highland, UK.  This adds more data to my theory that many of the Gulls in Dublin are not from here!  

14th September

Recently in Sean Walsh Park there have been 2 - 4 med Gulls present, all un-ringed.  Today one dropped in with a White Ring.  White[3615]  I assume it is another from Belguim, I await the re-sighting report.


11th September

The cygnets are getting big enough to ring.  I had to catch this one in Sean Walsh Parknand remove the plastic bag which was wrapped around its neck.  It had been there for a couple of days before I got the opportunity to catch and remove it.


9th September

This afternoon I got out for an hours ring reading at Dun Laoghaire.  The first Ring I spotted was on the German Juvenile.  I read 5 med Gulls before moving on to Bullock Harbour



2XK5 was ringed in Dublin.  There have been no foreign sightings to establish where it is from....yet!
 Ringed in Dublin 2XA4 breeds in a French colony.
Mediterranean Gull 2XA4
I also recorded a new Belguim Med Gull White 3225 but no photo worth uploading! At Bullock Harbour only one Colour Ring was recorded - the German Med AKAJ.  I did spot a Juvenile with a metal ring!  GV65109 does not appear to be a club ring!  I wonder where it was ringed?  I have reported it and will find out during the week.





My other son had a match in Sandyford this morning.  During his warm up I went looking at the large flocks of Gulls.  Spotted a Black Headed Gull with a white ring ECR4.  Reported on line.  This is the 3rd Dublin sighting but my first.  It is also the 1st Dublin sighting of ECR4 since 2016!

Black-headed Gull White ECR4 from Holland.

8th September

The afternoon was my first I-WEBS count of the season, so no ring reading this afternoon.  However, before I started I scanned the 100+ Gulls on the Dodder Estuary and on the surrounding Roofs.  I spotted 1 of our Red Rings! 607:D was ringed on the roof of Abbey Street as a 2nd sighting onto the data base

607:D Herring Gull


Rathcoole, was the venue for my sons football match.  However, I spotted 17 Med Gulls.  Only one colour Ring.  A German Mediterranean Gull ASTL.  The park is 18km from the coast.

Mediterranean Gull Green[ASTL] from Germany

1st September

At Sandycove this evening there were 31 Med Gulls and this time plenty of Coloured Rings!  Only a couple of Sandwich terns but no rings so I concentrated on the Med Gulls.

The first CR Juvenile was one of a large group that was ringed in England on passage.  One to watch in the future as which Country it will return to. 


Yellow 2P36












White 3289 was ringed in Antwerp, this year and my 2nd sighting
Med Gull White [3289]

 2X0E was ringed in Jan 2017 as a Juvenile - Hatched in 2016

Yellow 2X0E
2X7A was ringed in 2014 as an Adult.  It has got fishing line wrapped around the tibia of it's left leg.  I had a good look and it is not caught in the ring.  This is a common problem with all Gulls.  Maybe we we will catch it later and remove the fishing line?  


Med Gull Yellow [2X7A]
2X9J is another one ringed in 2017 as an adult


My bird of the day and I didn't get a whole photo of the Juvenile!  E943488 was metal ring only.  They are much harder to read than a Black-headed Gull as they are more wary! On the right written vertically is Brussels!  Another from Belgium.

E943488

 Last was the French Green [RS96], a regular at Sandycove.  Ringed as a Pullus in 2014, I have recorded it many times.  Red [PRN6] was also present - as usual!