Ring-billed Bonus

I was working today and was fortunate enough to be sent to Gosport. Walpole Road Gosport to be exact which for the last few years has been the favoured winter haunt of a Ring-billed Gull.  I arrived at around eight o’clock and could see a few gulls on and around the boating lake. However birding had to wait as work came first. After I had finished my delivery I strolled over the road to the boating lake. A scan of the gulls on the lake got only Black-headed as did a check of the birds on the grass. I then noticed a couple of gulls ahead of me on the path. A quick look with the bins confirmed one was the Ring-billed. Unsurprisingly as the gull has been visiting here for more than ten years it was quite confiding although it would only tolerate me getting so close. It would probably have been different if I’d had some food with me. I spent five minutes or so there and took a couple of record shots on my phone before I had to go. A life tick was certainly the last thing I was expecting when I left home at four fifteen this morning.RBG

4 responses to “Ring-billed Bonus

  1. Richard Williams

    Just proves the point, Malcolm, that if we keep our eyes open it is surprising what we see. Not quite in your league but I have just seen a Little Egret in Westlea Brook.

    • Eyes and ears and I reckon that ears are just as, if not more important. A thorough knowledge of calls is the main thing that separates the excellent from the average birder. And I am sad to admit that they are my weakest point.
      As for Little Egrets, it is amazing to think that relatively recently they were a rare bird. Now they pop up all over the place.

  2. Richard Williams

    Definitely makes me still average then!! I set myself a goal this year of improving my aural skills and knowing more songs and calls and, while there have been some successes, even now, if I’m not out there regularly and putting the face to the call there are some pretty common birds that I am missing. I have listened to the Simon Barnes and BTO CD’s but need to be more diligent: correction while I have the CD’s playing I am inevitably doing something else so that they become background music and therefore I am not really learning them…..need to do better!

    • I just don’t seem to be able to retain stuff from CD’s etc. I was always the same with languages. The only way for me is hearing and seeing the real thing.

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