Catches

Pitsea - 25/03/2017: Our last field session for this winter. A small but experienced team assembled and the wind got up really quickly. Not many birds on the tip and clearly there had been a big clear out. One of the first birds I saw on the tip face was a nice first winter Caspian so we were hopeful of something different. We got a nice early dust cart with plenty of food and once it was rolled over we had birds down. It took some time for a window to appear with birds hanging in the wind making taking a catch really difficult. After several lifts and nothing interesting in the catching area I decided to attempt a catch and with good safety from Dave we soon took a catch of 201 birds. We decided to re set and just see what happened whilst we were processing. A second lorry with more food on it was soon flattened in front of the net and plenty of birds came down. Very little of interest but then a Caspian was hanging over the catching area but not landing. Rich then found a Glaucous Gull which was flying around but again just would not land so it soon went off high to the south. We waited and waited and eventually another Caspian was hanging in the air about the catching area. With very few birds in the catching area I only needed it to land - as soon as it did I took the catch including the Caspian - a great way to finish the season. Huge thanks to the tip and a great team effort again.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 91 6 1 60
Great Black-backed Gull 5 0 0 5
Lesser Black-backed Gull 5 0 0 5
Herring Gull 93 0 0 93
Catch totals 194 6 1 163

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 7 0 0 0
Herring Gull 56 0 0 26
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 64 0 0 27
Trip totals 258 6 1 190

Pitsea - 11/03/2017: On arrival at the tip the tide was out and there were no birds!! Slightly worrying as it was also a warm day. We set none the less and shortly a bin lorry arrived to which a good number of Black-heads appeared out of thin air! A few quick roll overs with the compactor and we soon had a lot of birds down in the catching area. Once safe a decent catch of just under 300 birds was secured.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 223 11 1 233
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Lesser Black-backed Gull 4 0 0 4
Herring Gull 54 1 0 54
Catch totals 282 12 1 292

Pitsea - 25/02/2017: A team led by Aron whilst I was away proved successful and kept our numbers for this winter up. A good catch of 248 birds in windy conditions was a useful addition to the annual totals.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 25 0 0 25
Great Black-backed Gull 6 0 0 6
Herring Gull 210 6 1 64
Catch totals 241 6 1 95

Pitsea - 14/01/2017: Our first trip out for 2017 and a very nice day. Only one dust cart which the tip very kindly dumped for us before we had even got up onto the tip! Birds were on the waste already so it was clear there was food in it. After setting and a roll over we had a small number of birds in the catching area. However, what was clear was that it was a really nice mixed catch with a good number of Common Gulls in it so we decided to take it. About 100 birds including a Rook! As it was early it was worth a second set and with the small first catch processed with biometrics taken as we neared the end a second roll from the compactor soon had birds down. Mostly small gulls but soon a second catch was in the bag. Highlights were a control Common Gull from Germany and a Norwegian Great Black-backed. Nothing else of note but mot of both catches colour ringed. Thanks once again to the tip staff for supporting our work again.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 37 4 0 41
Great Black-backed Gull 6 0 1 7
Common Gull 28 0 1 29
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 22 0 0 21
Catch totals 94 4 2 99

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 123 1 0 118
Common Gull 9 0 0 9
Herring Gull 56 0 1 56
Catch totals 188 1 1 183
Trip totals 282 5 3 282

Pitsea - 17/12/2016: What a great way to finish the year! Two catches on a foggy day with a big team. Dave took a good a difficult catch with a fox threatening to lift all the birds for the first catch. Nice early start with 128 birds. We re set as it was early and after a few problems losing birds playing a waiting game worked and a decent second catch of 305 was excellent for the large team to process split into a large and small gull set. Two interesting birds a nice Med Gull and what was almost certainly an F2 or F3 Herring Hybrid with probably Glaucus ancestry somewhere in it. What was remarkable today was the 27 retraps and controls - this is probably one of the biggest percentages we have ever had. Huge thanks to the tip staff once again for fantastic support in getting birds into the catching area for us.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 112 5 2 60
Common Gull 2 0 0 2
Herring Gull 7 0 0 7
Catch totals 121 5 2 69

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 162 9 5 0
Mediterranean Gull 1 0 0 1
Common Gull 2 0 0 2
Herring Gull 119 6 0 120
Hybrid Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 285 15 5 124
Trip totals 406 20 7 193

Pitsea - 03/12/2016: A small and inexperienced team assembled knowing these sessions are now difficult. The small team went one down due to a no show and then another team member had to go for a small emergency so we were then reduced to a team of 9. Due to this I needed to reduce the catch as one of the size of the last one would not be able to be coped with by a small team. We did this by placing the waste a little further from the net to reduce numbers. The first dust card did not seem to have much food and no birds showed any interest. A second dust cart seemed much more attractive and and soon a good number of birds were down. We allowed a couple of lifts and my intention was to take a reasonably quick catch for more Black Heads rather than to wait for the large gulls - after a short while an opportunity came up and a catch was taken which turned out to be 249 birds. There was one control Black-headed Gull from Finland and one from Lithuania. A single UK control Herring Gull was the only other bird that was not new or a NTGG bird. A good extraction and very smooth processing, although a little slow with the small team went very well and thanks to all team members for their efforts. Many thanks to the tip staff who once again were superb in their efforts to get us birds.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 146 5 2 152
Lesser Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Herring Gull 90 3 1 92
Catch totals 238 8 3 246

Pitsea - 19/11/2016: Another interesting day. Again all or nothing. A third dust card had food in and we got all the gulls in the catching area! One lift looked like we were going to loose some birds but most of them came back and Aron took the first available catch resulting in 419 mostly large gulls. I single Belgium control and a number of our own retraps. Thanks to the tip team for their support and getting us the dust cart with food on.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 8 0 0 8
Great Black-backed Gull 4 0 0 4
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 399 6 1 225
Catch totals 412 6 1 238

Pitsea - 15/10/2016: Well that was interesting!! We have arrived at a point we have expected for some time. Only five vehicles came into the tip today and there was a real lack of food available. With the tide out there were not many birds on the tip to start with. However, I made a rash comment earlier on - we will either get none or all of them! Just gone ten o'clock a second dust cart came in and it was clear when it dropped in front of the net it had a lot of food in it with birds straight down. After a few safety issues a window presented itself and a catch was taken. Final total was 418 birds mostly large gulls. This is certainly our largest single large gull catch. 27 GBB's was a good total and considering how few LBB'S on the tip catching 3 was good. One bird was put down as a hybrid which we initially ringed as a LBB, however on reflection I think this bird had some Herring Gull in it's ancestry. Controls were interesting with a Herring Gull from Stevanger Norway, one from Holland and one from Belgium. Well done to the small team and a huge thanks to the tip staff who worked fantastically to get birds into the catching area.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 21 1 0 22
Great Black-backed Gull 27 1 0 26
Lesser Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 3
Herring Gull 350 11 3 122
Hybrid Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 402 13 3 174

Pitsea - 11/06/2016: A second session attempting for Med Gulls did unfortunately not deliver. Very few Med Gulls around probably not more than six. Two canon net catches taken by Aron with a total of 110 birds for the day which included six Rooks. A single Med Gull was trapped in a spring trap.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Mediterranean Gull 1 0 0 1
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Lesser Black-backed Gull 6 0 0 6
Herring Gull 44 0 0 32
Catch totals 52 0 0 40

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 14 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 38 0 0 38
Catch totals 52 0 0 38
Trip totals 104 0 0 78

Pitsea - 04/06/2016: Canon netting today was cancelled due to the threat of showers and difficulties with staff shortages on the tip. I decided to go and read some rings and see how many Med Gulls there were on the tip as this is the time of year they build up. On arrival two adult Med Gulls were the first birds I saw. I had also decided to take my large raptor spring trap and put some bread in it with a pull string just to see if anything went in whilst I was ring reading. After a slow start with mostly Herring Gulls on the tip a few more Med's started to turn up. Then amazingly one walked straight into the spring trap, a failed pull saw the bird beat the trap out. Very quickly a second one had done the same. I realised that the pull string was the problem and with a slight adjustment a French ringed bird was soon back in the catching area and a quick pull on the string saw it safely secured. Over the next hour and a half the turn over of Med's seemed quite high and four more were caught one more French bird and three new ones. A metal ringed Black-headed Gull was also trapped along with two new Black-headed Gulls. A very successful and unexpected morning and I think this method will be deployed again in the next couple of weeks. Apologies to all the team who I called off this weekend hopefully we can do the same or better next weekend.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 2 1 0 3
Mediterranean Gull 3 0 2 4
Catch totals 5 1 2 7

Pitsea - 02/04/2016: We don't normally go in April but with quite a lot of cancelled sessions and some interest in going one last time a small team assembled to see what was around. No gulls on the tip when we arrived and started to set but as lorries came in birds started to feed. We soon had a dust cart and shortly birds came onto the waste. As I was nervous about loosing birds or them going off the feed I took a fairly quick catch. This turned out to be very useful around 100 birds. We took the decision to take lots of biometrics and all Black-headed Gulls had wing and head a bill measurements taken which was great practice for people. We had set again and as we had finished the last few Black-heads as it was getting warm I asked Dave to get the compactor driver to give us another roll over. Birds came quickly back on the feed and I noticed that there were a good number of Lesser's in the catching area so I decided to take a catch as quickly as I could. This was a good decision and another 19 Lesser's were soon being extracted. All of these had biometrics taken and all birds except a few Herrings from the first catch were colour ringed. A great finish to the season and a really pleasing day with a good small team. Fantastic work once again by the tip staff and a great setting location went towards a successful day.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 87 3 0 89
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 17 0 0 10
Catch totals 105 3 0 100

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 51 1 0 52
Lesser Black-backed Gull 18 0 0 18
Herring Gull 41 5 0 41
Catch totals 110 6 0 111
Trip totals 215 9 0 211

Pitsea - 12/03/2016: I may need to check the records but I think today might be a record with a final total of 858 birds caught. With large numbers of Black-heads on the move two large catches gave an excellent day total. A few issues with Foxes to start with gave us a bit of a headache then Dave took a superb catch. Once extracted and part way through the processing Alan gave us another roll and birds were soon down. With a large team I elected to take a second catch and again just as big. Totals given below. Excellent work by all the team to process a large number of birds.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 354 6 2 200
Common Gull 1 0 1 2
Lesser Black-backed Gull 17 0 1 18
Herring Gull 11 1 0 0
Catch totals 383 7 4 220

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 345 11 5 0
Common Gull 2 0 0 2
Lesser Black-backed Gull 25 0 1 26
Herring Gull 68 0 1 69
Catch totals 440 11 7 97
Trip totals 823 18 11 317

Pitsea - 27/02/2016: After a dreadful run of weather and not being able to get out since 23 Jan a large team assembled on the tip. Not many birds to start with and not much feeding but an early set saw us ready. Around 9:15 am a dust cart came in and was dropped in front of the net. Birds started to feed as soon as the compactor flattened the waste and we soon had a large number of birds in the catching area. I realised that there were a good number of Lesser BB's in the area so I took the opportunity at the first small window to take the catch. It turned out to be very worthwhile with 299 birds including 21 new Lesser BB's and 130 of Herring and Black-headed and a couple of GBB's. A few retraps and two controls one Dutch and one Belgium. A few of the team did quite a bit of ring reading and there will be a good number of sightings also going onto the database. A great day and excellent support from the tip staff as always.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 133 6 2 62
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Lesser Black-backed Gull 21 0 0 21
Herring Gull 130 5 0 34
Catch totals 286 11 2 119

Pitsea - 23/01/2016: A day that looked like it was going to be a problem turned out to be very good. It is difficult to describe the feeling when you are half set and find that Baz has the dropper cable at home and is not there on the day! However, a little bit of cutting and splicing on the main cable soon had us up and running. First press of the button gave nothing. On checking a trip over the cable by someone who will remain nameless (Aron) had pulled out the far connection. On re connecting birds were quickly back and soon a first catch was taken. With it being early we re set in the same fashion and after another roll from the compactor driver a second catch was in the bag. An excellent day with 448 birds caught. One Russian control was the highlight as for two ringers were a Rook and a Carrion Crow. Many thanks to the tip staff once again who were fantastic.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 115 5 0 119
Great Black-backed Gull 4 0 0 4
Common Gull 2 0 0 2
Herring Gull 87 1 0 22
Catch totals 208 6 0 147

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 58 2 0 58
Great Black-backed Gull 31 0 1 31
Common Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 135 2 1 114
Catch totals 225 4 2 204
Trip totals 433 10 2 351

Pitsea - 16/01/2016: A very cold start was full of promise and for once actually delivered. Fantastic support from the tip staff who put us on a set right next to the tip face (and Stuart threatened to stick his radio some where unpleasant if I did not catch here!). Luckily for me the first roll of the only dust cart waste brought birds down and after only two lifts a first catch was taken of just over 100 birds. As it was very early we elected to set for a second attempt whilst we processed birds. What was then interesting was that there was only one feeding session in about three hours which did not look good. However, with only a handful of Herring Gulls left to process birds started feeding again and I decided to ask the compactor driver to roll our waste again. This did the trick and soon a second catch was in the bag. Again it was just over 100 birds but what we did not know until it was pulled out of a bag was that there was a fantastic adult Caspian Gull in the catch. All birds were processed safely and efficiently and we left the tip just after 2pm. Many thanks to the tip staff who were fantastic and again supported both catches.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 115 5 3 122
Common Gull 3 0 0 3
Lesser Black-backed Gull 5 0 0 5
Herring Gull 22 0 0 22
Catch totals 145 5 3 152

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 148 2 1 149
Common Gull 1 0 0 1
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 25 1 0 25
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 176 3 1 177
Trip totals 321 8 4 329

Pitsea - 05/12/2015: A tough day with a very strong 'breeze' that made setting the net rather a challenge! First obstacle was preventing the plastic strip from blowing away and after we had collected about half a tonne of rubble, to weigh it down, we had somewhere to lay the net. We had been allocated a site close to the tip face and this also provided some logistical problems for the firing team, with lorries wanting to turn near to our firing cables. This resulted in the cables having to be disconnected on several occasions and then rechecked. This wasn't too much of a problem though as we didn't get a dust cart until almost 11am, so except for the odd Starling and Rook we didn't have very much in the catching area. However this all changed as soon as the dust cart dumped its load and after one roll with the compacter we had a large number of gulls feeding avidly. Initially there were too many small gulls 'hanging in the wind but as the bigger gulls moved in things settled more and we quickly got the chance to take a good catch of 172 birds including 30 Great Black-backs.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 7 0 0 7
Great Black-backed Gull 29 0 1 29
Herring Gull 136 3 0 135
Catch totals 172 3 1 171

Pitsea - 10/10/2015: Another tough day with birds not wanting to feed early on and again we had to wait until the main tip started to cover over before birds showed any interest in our waste. It was full of food so it is unclear why birds are waiting so long until they come on to feed. It may be because it has been very warm and birds did not need to feed but it is interesting never the less. Eventually Aron was able to take a catch and the timing was just right with a very nice catch of 172 birds including 2 Yellow-legs. Thanks once again to the tip for their hard work and enabling us to continue activities and keep the study going.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 30 1 0 31
Great Black-backed Gull 16 2 1 17
Lesser Black-backed Gull 8 0 0 8
Herring Gull 106 5 1 109
Yellow-legged Gull 2 0 0 2
Catch totals 162 8 2 167

Pitsea - 19/09/2015: Great start to the season. Aron took a good catch of just under 100 birds. It was a warm day and birds did not want to feed so we had to wait until 11:30 before we could take a catch. Worth the wait though and in warm conditions the team processed the birds quickly and efficiently. Huge thanks to the tip staff and Stuart who all worked hard to help us take a catch which paid off in the end. 57 birds colour ringed including another YL Gull, and six Great Black-backed Gulls. A nice bonus for one of the team was a Rook gladly accepted as a ringing tick. Next session planned for 3rd October.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Great Black-backed Gull 6 0 0 6
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 89 2 1 49
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 97 2 1 57

Pitsea - 21/03/2015: Well it does not get much better than that!!! A reasonable size team gathered on a cold breezy day and we were greeted with a light shower. Deciding to push on we set and got two excellent dust carts with a good amount of food on each. The first catch taken by Aron was difficult but 203 birds was a good total. Given this we decided to re set and wait for something good - there had been a couple of Iceland Gulls seen on the tip so we are always hopeful! After a short while birds came back onto feed and then to my surprise a second winter Iceland was in the catching area - Aron pressed the button but nothing happened - he had forgotten to connect! The birds all lifted and we lost the Iceland - I thought that was going to be it! But as we know birds often come back to the same spot if they have not finished feeding so I watched the spot where it was - then to my utter amazement a full adult white winged Gull arrived at the same spot! Aron could not fire due to air traffic and then to my horror the flock lifted apart from about 20 birds - one of which was the white winged gull - I am sure I just said to Aron fire with now swearing..........! With a small second catch taken early everyone was keen to re set! So we did and said again we would wait for something good. We did not have to wait long and a fantastic first winter Caspian arrived in the catching area - Aron did not take long to get safety and a nice third catch of 80+ birds was taken. An excellent day all round and what a day to finish off the season. Massive thanks to the tip staff for all their support this winter. The White winged gull from the second catch was initially identified in the hand as a large male Iceland Gull. However, after photographs of it in the field and a review of the measurements was undertaken it was clear that this was a small (probably female) Glaucous Gull. Initially the measurements were thought to be in the range for large Iceland and the bird did not have the angry look of Glauc, seemed to have a small bill and took the ring size for Herring Gull. However, we did discuss the bulky size of the bird and there were some doubts that were discussed on the day but we stuck with Iceland until photos were send the measurements reviewed. This bird has now been assigned to the species Glaucous Gull and becomes the groups first Glaucous Gull ever caught.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 76 5 0 79
Herring Gull 122 0 0 121
Catch totals 198 5 0 200

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 3 0 1 3
Herring Gull 16 0 0 16
Glaucous Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 20 0 1 20

Catch 3

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 44 0 0 44
Lesser Black-backed Gull 11 0 1 11
Herring Gull 75 0 1 75
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 1
Hybrid Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 132 0 2 132
Trip totals 350 5 3 352

Pitsea - 07/02/2015: A good day with a small and not so experienced team a catch of 326 was probably about right. The single catch was processed slowly and all except three birds were colour ringed. One German Black-headed control and five of our own birds retrapped. Thanks once again to the tip staff for an excellent day in supporting our activities.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 199 5 1 203
Great Black-backed Gull 4 0 0 4
Common Gull 4 0 0 4
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 111 1 0 111
Catch totals 319 6 1 323

Pitsea - 24/01/2015: A large team assembled for our second field session of the year. We were were met with a large queue of lorries although only one was a dustcart. We were given an excellent set and there were lots of birds on the tip. The tip sent us two dustcarts and when the compactor came over lots of birds were down quickly. The first catch had two problems associated with it. Firstly there were lots of safety issues with birds all over the net. Secondly the wind had shifted about 30 degrees round from the original position and when we were able to fire the net hung and we lost around two thirds of the birds in the catching area that were able to beat the net out. This resulted in a catch of 100 birds from firing on around 300. We made the decision to change the set and swung the whole set around by 30 degrees. This was more effective and although the second catch was difficult when we took it the net went out much better and the second catch was 292 birds. Huge thanks to the tip staff for getting us the only two dustcarts that came onto the tip.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 53 0 0 53
Lesser Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Herring Gull 45 0 0 45
Catch totals 100 0 0 100

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 72 2 0 74
Great Black-backed Gull 12 0 1 11
Common Gull 2 0 0 2
Herring Gull 197 3 3 96
Catch totals 283 5 4 183
Trip totals 383 5 4 283

Rainham - 02/01/2015: A short notice trip to Rainham was very productive with a final total of 229 birds all of which were colour ringed. Huge thanks to the tip who were fantastic in helping us make two good catches.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 57 3 0 60
Common Gull 2 0 0 2
Lesser Black-backed Gull 4 0 0 4
Herring Gull 10 0 0 10
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 74 3 0 77

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 140 1 0 141
Common Gull 3 0 0 3
Herring Gull 8 0 0 8
Catch totals 151 1 0 152
Trip totals 225 4 0 229

Pitsea - 06/12/2014: A cold day with a hard frost meant there were lots of birds on site. The first load of waste did not seem to have a lot of food but soon a dustcart bought in a good load and soon birds were down. Great work from the compactor driver meant we were soon able to take a catch. We re set and with only a few more Herring Gulls to do there was the possibility of another catch which we elected to take. The final total of 567 birds caught of which 451 were colour ringed was a fantastic day.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 206 5 4 180
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Common Gull 4 0 0 4
Lesser Black-backed Gull 9 0 0 9
Herring Gull 117 2 2 53
Catch totals 338 7 6 248

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 96 0 1 92
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Common Gull 2 0 0 2
Lesser Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Herring Gull 107 3 0 106
Catch totals 208 3 1 203
Trip totals 546 10 7 451

Pitsea - 15/11/2014: A difficult day again. Mild weather and lack of food meant little feeding going on although there were good numbers of birds on the tip. Excellent work by Alan the compactor driver resulted in a catch being able to be taken of just over 200 birds.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 15 0 0 15
Great Black-backed Gull 6 0 0 6
Lesser Black-backed Gull 5 0 0 5
Herring Gull 178 3 2 182
Catch totals 204 3 2 208

Pitsea - 27/09/2014: A warm day which was difficult to take a catch of any size. The birds agreed and for the first three hours we only had two birds in the catching area! After some excellent work by Alan the compactor driver the birds worked out that the tip was about to close and we went from no birds to pretty much all of them! A lift was required and it was not long before the flock obliged and much smaller numbers returned enabling us to take a catch of a decent size. Final total was 104 birds which were processed and released quickly and efficiently.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 102 0 0 102
Catch totals 104 0 0 104

Pitsea - 30/08/2014: A small team went to make an attempt at Pitsea after the week before Steve Arlow had seen over 50 Yellow-legs on the tip. We were not disappointed today and again we estimated over 50 Yellow-legs were present. The small catch was worth taking with the three Yellow-legs and with a warm day and small team it was a perfect catch and processing session allowing us to look hard at the moult in Herring Gulls and assess our ageing criteria.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 1 0 0 1
Great Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 3
Lesser Black-backed Gull 7 0 0 7
Herring Gull 52 0 0 51
Yellow-legged Gull 3 0 0 3
Catch totals 66 0 0 65

Pitsea - 08/03/2014: In interesting day which started with a miss fire catching only 43 birds. The second set went more to plan and the fire was when we wanted it to be with a nice total of 163. The third set was waiting for something good and with an Iceland Gull around it was worth waiting to see what happened. We had a nice adult Med Gull arrive in the catching area and with good numbers in the catching area we decided to take the catch. A good day all round with a good total of 361 new and 10 retraps and controls.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 39 1 1 41
Herring Gull 2 0 0 2
Catch totals 41 1 1 43

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 113 2 1 66
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Herring Gull 45 0 0 44
Catch totals 160 2 1 112

Catch 3

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 74 3 1 0
Mediterranean Gull 1 0 0 1
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 84 1 0 82
Catch totals 160 4 1 84
Trip totals 361 7 3 239

Rainham - 22/02/2014: At long last we have made our fist visit for 2014 and managed two very nice catches. A close set to the tip was beneficial and there were a reasonable number of gulls on the feed although mainly small gulls. Large gulls were noticeably absent. Dave took the first catch with a nice mix including a Yellow-leg and I took the second catch which was mostly Black-heads and a Common Gull. The second catch included a Danish control. With gulls not packed too closely together both catches were almost identical numbers. Two loads of shredded waste obviously had just enough food in to bring gulls on to feed but not a great deal and we are now really seeing the reduction in food waste at Rainham. The real value again was the fact we managed with the two smaller catches to colour mark 214 of the 217 birds. Thanks once again to the tip staff and particularly Peter and Mark the compactor driver.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 69 0 0 68
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Lesser Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Herring Gull 34 1 0 34
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 108 1 0 107

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 104 1 1 105
Common Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 106 1 1 107
Trip totals 214 2 1 214

Pitsea - 24/01/2014: A large team assembled for our second field session of 2015. We were met with a large queue of lorries as we arrived but only one was a dust cart. On going up onto the tip the set we had been given was excellent and there were lots of birds on the tip. We set and had two dustcarts sent over to us by the tip (these turned out to be the only ones in all day). All looked good as the compactor flattened the waste and lots of birds came in. Unfortunately two problems occurred. There were lots of safety issues and there were birds all over the net which stopped us firing quickly. The second issue was the wind had swung round about 30 degrees and when we did fire the net hung and shifted a fair way left. This meant probably around two thirds of the birds in the catching area beat the net out. The catch of 100 birds was good but could have been so much bigger. With this in mind and the fact it was still early we elected to swing the set round by the required 30 degrees. This proved much more effective and although the second catch was still very difficult with birds hanging in the air and dropping food in the safety zone soon a second catch of 292 birds was taken. Massive thanks to the tip once again for excellent support and sorting us out the only two dustcarts of the day.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 53 0 0 53
Lesser Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Herring Gull 45 0 0 45
Catch totals 100 0 0 100

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 72 2 0 74
Great Black-backed Gull 12 0 1 11
Common Gull 2 0 0 2
Herring Gull 197 3 3 96
Catch totals 283 5 4 183
Trip totals 383 5 4 283

Pitsea - 28/12/2013: Our last session of the year. This weekend is often good a coupled with the winds there were a lot of Great Black-backed Gulls on the tip. We were a little further away from the tip face than we would have preferred but the tip team did a fantastic job of getting us a load of waste and pushing it into the catching area. A final total of 202 new birds with three retraps and a single Norwegian control was good and with the single catch we were able to colour ring 189 of the 206 birds caught. Once again thanks to the tip staff for their hard work.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 35 1 0 36
Great Black-backed Gull 35 0 1 35
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 131 2 0 117
Catch totals 202 3 1 189

Rainham - 30/11/2013: Today we could only get access to Rainham and on arrival it was clear there was not many lorries coming in. We set and waited, and waited! Eventually just gone ten a lorry with some waste came in and we decided to take it and make an attempt. Dave was in charge for the day and took an excellent catch (despite it containing 19 Starlings - 3 of which Barry managed to let go before ringing!) A good total of 213 new birds with 3 control and two retrap Black-headed Gulls. Thanks again to the excellent efforts of the tip team again and excellent work from them effected the catch.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 60 2 3 63
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Herring Gull 135 0 0 100
Catch totals 197 2 3 165

Rainham - 16/11/2013: An excellent day at Rainham and first huge thanks to the tip staff Peter and Mark who worked so hard to effect the catch for us. A single catch of 187 new birds (which included 4 Starlings) and some interesting others! A German control (colour ringed) Yellow-legged Gull, a Dutch control (colour ringed) Lesser Black-backed Gull, a control BH Gull and two control Herring Gulls. Two birds put down as Caspian, the first 99% certain and the second hmmm! The second bird may have some hybrid in it as it was not a classic but we were fairly sure it was not a normal Herring Gull. Thanks once again for all the support from the tip and a great team effort and a day of quality rather than quantity.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 42 0 1 43
Lesser Black-backed Gull 2 0 1 2
Herring Gull 137 1 1 138
Yellow-legged Gull 0 0 1 0
Caspian Gull 2 0 0 2
Catch totals 183 1 4 185

Pitsea - 05/10/2013: A decent start to the season considering there were not that many birds on site. Some of the Guernsey team had also come over for the session and were pleased to catch some Black-headed Gulls and Great Black-backed Gulls. Two small catches for the inexperienced team were also just right and people were able to spend time looking at the finer points of ageing Herring Gulls.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 14 0 0 14
Great Black-backed Gull 15 0 0 15
Lesser Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Herring Gull 25 0 0 25
Catch totals 56 0 0 56

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Lesser Black-backed Gull 6 0 0 6
Herring Gull 71 0 1 71
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 78 0 1 78
Trip totals 134 0 1 134

Pitsea - 29/06/2013: Another small team assembled for a second summer attempt primarily at Med Gulls. There were a few more on the tip than at the start of June but still not big numbers suggesting that breeding is still taking place. Despite the wind and a few minor problems with a fox and two lorries we eventually managed to get a few Med Gulls in the catching area and took a small catch which included three Meds. The small catch allowed us to colour ring and take biometrics on all birds which is a nice change. Thanks to all the tip team for excellent help once again and a good day was had by all.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 23 0 0 23
Mediterranean Gull 3 0 0 3
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 7 0 0 7
Catch totals 34 0 0 34

Pitsea - 01/06/2013: At long last we were able to make an attempt at the time Mediterranean Gulls are visiting the tip. Unfortunately things are late this year and there were not many birds. However a small team took a nice catch including two Mediterranean Gulls and 24 Lesser Black-backs which was very pleasing. Two Rooks were also our first for some time. What was really interesting was the number of gulls on the tip, particularly of Great and Lesser Black-backed Gulls. With the warm weather, a single early catch was all that was possible and with a small team and we were all cleared up by noon. There were probably around 10 Mediterranean Gulls, seen mainly in pairs and generally calling. They seem to come in and snatch and grab with only Black-headed Gulls and larger gulls feeding on the ground for any length of time.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 95 4 2 37
Mediterranean Gull 2 0 0 2
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Lesser Black-backed Gull 24 0 0 24
Herring Gull 19 3 0 19
Catch totals 142 7 2 84

Rainham - 02/03/2013: A very hard day at Rainham today. The tip staff were fantastic and persisted in helping us get gulls into the catching area resulting in a single catch of 168 birds; 166 Gulls and two Carrion Crows.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 154 3 1 81
Common Gull 6 0 0 6
Herring Gull 2 0 0 2
Catch totals 162 3 1 89

Pitsea - 16/02/2013: We know that in February we can take large catches of Black-headed Gulls. Well this was a "mega" day! Our biggest day ever with a grand total, in two catches, of 845 birds. Some fantastic work by the compactor driver Alan got lots of birds into the catching area and two nice catches were taken.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 342 1 2 33
Great Black-backed Gull 4 0 0 4
Common Gull 1 0 0 1
Lesser Black-backed Gull 9 0 0 9
Herring Gull 81 2 0 0
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 438 3 2 48

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 365 2 4 2
Common Gull 14 0 1 15
Lesser Black-backed Gull 4 0 0 4
Herring Gull 14 0 0 13
Catch totals 397 2 5 34
Trip totals 835 5 7 82

Pitsea - 02/02/2013: A difficult day being a little way from the tip and in a position past the site due to earth works and lorry movements for the day. However, as always the tip staff were fantastic and arranged two loads of waste the second of which soon attracted lots of birds into the catching area. A single catch of 277 birds was an excellent achievement given the length of time we had to wait for birds to get interested. Highlights were a Russian Herring Gull and 14 Great Black-backed Gulls. A bird which we thought might be a Caspian Gull was eventually decided to be a hybrid with some elements of Caspian or Yellow-leg in it although the full provenance of its lineage is potentially questionable and still very unclear!! [Update: the bird was re-sighted on 30 Nov 2013 and then appeared to be a Great Black-backed Gull]. Thanks to all the team and a great day with 99 of the 277 birds colour ringed.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 58 0 0 57
Great Black-backed Gull 14 1 0 14
Common Gull 2 0 0 2
Lesser Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 3
Herring Gull 197 1 1 23
Catch totals 274 2 1 99

Pitsea - 26/01/2013: An excllent day with a very small team and a single catch of 353 new birds 9 retraps and 3 controls. One retrap Black-headed Gull turned out to be 27 years and 57 days old. A retrap Common Gull turned out to be four years old and is now colour ringed. Two Belgium controls and 100 birds colour ringed all went towards an excellent day.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 229 6 3 31
Great Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 3
Common Gull 36 1 0 37
Herring Gull 84 2 0 28
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 353 9 3 100

Pitsea - 12/01/2013: An excellent day with a large team we managed two catches of around 300 each catch. Final day total of 600 new birds and 5 controls/retraps. Two good dustcarts full of waste and excellent support and help by the tip staff meant we nearly doubled our totals for this winter in one day!

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 134 0 0 109
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 163 2 2 102
Catch totals 300 2 2 214

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 257 0 1 76
Herring Gull 44 0 0 44
Catch totals 301 0 1 120
Trip totals 601 2 3 334

Rainham - 15/12/2012: Another tricky day with very few lorries coming in. Due to the setting location We tried a different approach and the compactor driver Mark pushed some of the waste from the previous day's mound down into the catching area. This worked OK and we were able to take a catch although not a big one as there were not many birds on the tip. However, another really good day with fantastic help from the tip staff and without them we would not have made a catch. The really interesting thing is that we colour ringed 128 of the 130 birds caught which is excellent value and one of the bonuses of taking small catches we end up colour ringing more of the catch.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 46 2 2 49
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Common Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 59 0 0 59
Catch totals 108 2 2 111

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 16 0 0 15
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 18 0 0 17
Trip totals 126 2 2 128

Pitsea - 24/11/2012: Cannon netting was cancelled today due to the weather, however a few of the group decided to go to read colour rings. I also wanted to experiment with a Norwegian style trapping method for a PhD student who has approached me to attempt to catch gulls at Billingsgate Fish Market. The trap did work but with lots of food available we only caught 10 birds. The day was of value though with 42 colour rings read including a Norwegian Herring Gull and a Norwegian Great Black-backed. One of our Black-headed Gulls, a Herring Gull from Bristol and many of our own.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Great Black-backed Gull 0 0 0 0
Herring Gull 10 0 0 10
Catch totals 10 0 0 10

Rainham - 03/11/2012: A very tricky day with a tight area using the small net. Strong wind held lots of birds in the air and taking a catch was very difficult. With a small team the catch of 141 birds was just right and all birds were colour ringed today adding excellent value to the catch. Thanks to all for their hard work and as always the tip staff who were excellent at getting birds into the catching area in difficult conditions with little food waste coming in.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Lesser Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 3
Herring Gull 133 3 1 136
Catch totals 137 3 1 140

Pitsea - 13/10/2012: An excellent day given we have just found out that there is a DEFRA directive on no food waste onto landfill sites. Pitsea is now treating food waste differently and there is little coming on to the main tip. However, there is clearly still enogh food for birds to scavange and three catches were taken today due to good weather and fantastic help from the tip staff. Interesting days ahead. Highlights of the day were a Belgium ringed Herring Gull, three Yellow-legged Gulls and the very interesting early catch of 66 new Great Black-backed Gulls all of which were colour ringed. A single retrap Great Black-backed was from November 2010. The third catch taken by Dave Dutton was one of those classic feeding at lunch time before the tip closes sessions and huge thanks must go to the excellent work of the compactor driver to get the birds onto the waste. Thanks to all the team for a long but valuable day.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 67 0 0 52
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 59 0 2 38
Catch totals 127 0 2 91

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 15 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 38 0 0 38
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 81 0 0 0
Catch totals 135 0 0 39

Catch 3

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 17 1 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 28 1 0 28
Lesser Black-backed Gull 4 0 0 4
Herring Gull 255 2 1 1
Yellow-legged Gull 3 0 0 3
Catch totals 307 4 1 36
Trip totals 569 4 3 166

Pitsea - 24/03/2012: Unbelievable! What a way to end a superb season. 375 birds is a good total in any normal day. A fair wait for the first catch but a nice selection of birds with a good number of Lesser Black-backed Gulls and a Common Gull. However the best was yet to come with a second set to wait for something interesting, perhaps a Mediterranean or Caspian Gull. But after a short while a shout of Iceland soon turned into a Kumlien's. Tantalisingly it landed on the edge of the catching area and a full lift saw it go back over to the main tip. I had dismissed it and was concentrating on the Meds when it decided to land back smack in the middle of the catching area. With no safety issues a window very quickly meant a fire and the capture of our first Iceland Gull of the Kumlien's race.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 153 3 1 0
Common Gull 1 0 0 1
Lesser Black-backed Gull 18 0 1 19
Herring Gull 81 3 1 52
Catch totals 253 6 3 72

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 66 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 3
Herring Gull 43 2 1 0
Kumlien's Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 113 2 1 4
Trip totals 366 8 4 76

Pitsea - 10/03/2012: An interesting day. A single catch to enable the team to get back for the AGM. A few small problems with birds just not settling in the catching area and a constant roll through of birds meant it was difficult to fire. Three attempts with the firing box meant it was clear there was a problem, so a quick removal of the seat in the truck meant we took the catch using the Land Rover battery! However, once we had it sorted it was effective and 419 birds in the single catch was really good. A good lift and really fast ringing operation thanks to Andy's roundabout! Big thanks again to the compactor drivers for their hard work in getting birds into the catching area.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 295 2 1 0
Common Gull 2 0 0 2
Lesser Black-backed Gull 8 0 0 8
Herring Gull 108 2 1 110
Catch totals 413 4 2 120

Pitsea - 25/02/2012: At the start of the day there were not many birds on the tip and with little waste coming in early we were worried that there would not be many birds caught. However, with two good loads of wastse put in front of the net thing got much better and in the end two catches were able to be taken with over 700 birds, 696 Gulls and 42 Starlings. A great team effort and excellent support from the tip team again led to a fantastic day.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 330 3 2 0
Mediterranean Gull 2 0 0 2
Great Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 3
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 98 8 3 101
Catch totals 434 11 5 107

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 128 0 1 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 113 0 1 0
Catch totals 242 0 2 1
Trip totals 676 11 7 108

Rainham - 11/02/2012: Well it often goes that way!! On Friday when we were called off at Pitsea, so some running around and sorting out the possibility of a trip to Rainham turned out to be the best thing! Two really nice catches with lots of Common Gulls on the tip saw a final total of 44 Common Gulls ringed. Lesser Black-backed Gulls were also apparently on the move with the early push resulting in a good catch of this species too. We finally managed to catch some Black-headed Gulls and over the two catches 5 retraps and 9 controls was also an excellent result. The two Yellow-legged Gulls in the second catch were really the icing on the cake.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 95 1 3 0
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Common Gull 25 0 0 25
Lesser Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 3
Herring Gull 136 2 1 113
Catch totals 260 3 4 142

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 87 1 2 0
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Common Gull 19 0 0 19
Lesser Black-backed Gull 32 0 1 29
Herring Gull 22 1 2 0
Yellow-legged Gull 2 0 0 2
Catch totals 163 2 5 51
Trip totals 423 5 9 193

Pitsea - 28/01/2012: A great day. What looked like a difficult set turned out to be fine as there was little lorry movement and firing towards the road was not a problem. Two catches and the first in the bag for Dave Dutton. Very little of interest on the tip but the final total of 421 birds and 90 large gulls color ringed.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 60 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 27 0 0 26
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 218 2 1 58
Catch totals 306 2 1 85

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 36 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 4 1 1 5
Herring Gull 70 0 0 0
Catch totals 110 1 1 5
Trip totals 416 3 2 90

Pitsea - 14/01/2012: The first session of 2012 was rather difficult. Birds were very jumpy and did not want to settle. Safety issues and a single Great Black-backed Gull caused problems once the air traffic had cleared and severl lifts of all the birds meant a frustrating couple of hours wait before a catch could be taken. Fantastic work by the compactor drivers also secured a catch and without their hard work we would have drawn our first blank. Final total of 276 was very good given the circumstances.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 68 2 1 0
Great Black-backed Gull 14 0 0 14
Common Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 187 1 2 97
Catch totals 270 3 3 112

Rainham - 17/12/2011: A fantastic way to end the year with a really nice catch of 260 birds of which again only 7 were Black-headed. We appear to have lost the ability to catch this species but with 129 large gulls colour ringed the value of the catch was fantastic. Mostly Herring Gulls and the wet conditions making a few birds a little dirty gave some interesing ID issues! However, KHD did well to pick out another Caspian much to the delight of BW. Two Yellow-legs and a nice sample of 25 Great Black-backs is an excellent total for Rainham. A really good team effort with a tricky shower in the middle of processing and again great work from the tip staff saw an excellent end to 2011.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 7 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 25 0 0 25
Herring Gull 222 2 1 102
Yellow-legged Gull 2 0 0 2
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 257 2 1 130

Pitsea - 03/12/2011: After calling the day off then back on again we arrived at a windy but dry tip. Setting position was good and there were lots of birds on the tip, lots and lots and lots of big gulls. After a late start due to the threat of rain a first catch was soon in the bag. Our first catch of over 100 Great Black-backed Gulls in one catch. We processed the birds then set for a second attempt. After a quick roll from the compactor driver we had good numbers of large gulls in the catching area again. Once fired and processed another sixty plus Great Black-backs was just incredible. A really good day with 476 in total of which only 19 were Black-headed Gulls.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 7 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 101 0 1 68
Herring Gull 122 2 1 72
Catch totals 230 2 2 140

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 12 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 66 0 1 0
Herring Gull 162 1 0 0
Catch totals 240 1 1 0
Trip totals 470 3 3 140

Pitsea - 19/11/2011: A good day in all. Warm weather still hampers the will of birds to feed on refuse and with few lorries with much food coming in not as simple as usual. However, some excellent persistence from the compactor drivers enabled two catches to be taken with a total of just over 400 birds being excellent considering the conditions. Large numbers of Herring Gulls have now arrived at Pitsea and there were clearly some Northern birds in with them

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 22 1 0 0
Common Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 139 1 1 32
Catch totals 162 2 1 33

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 80 0 2 0
Common Gull 2 0 0 2
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 150 2 1 0
Catch totals 233 2 3 3
Trip totals 395 4 4 36

Rainham - 12/11/2011: The very mild weather meant birds did not seem particularly hungry. Also a lack of vehicles coming on to the tip meant there were not many birds around. A good set and a nice load of waste flattened for us soon had a reasonable number of birds down. After a few lifts and some safety issues a catch was taken. We re set but birds did not come back down in time to take a second catch. However, the day was good with 65 large gulls colour ringed including another Yellow-legged Gull.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 147 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 6 0 0 6
Herring Gull 57 1 0 58
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 211 1 0 65

Rainham - 22/10/2011: Another excellent day with good weather conducive to taking a nice catch of large birds. The set was a bit tricky with a 360 digger slightly in the way of where we wanted to fire so re angling with the wind just in the wrong place was a bit of a worry. However, once the waste had been rolled flat lots of birds came down very quickly, too many in fact! We needed a lift and soon got one. Birds still wanted to feed and very soon about 200 birds were back in the catching area and before long a safe window allowed a catch to be taken. A good extract and lift with a fairly inexperienced team and we processed the birds away from the tip face. One surprise was half way through processing to pull out another Caspian Gull. Also in the end five Yellow-legs were sifted from the Herring Gulls. The final total was 211.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Lesser Black-backed Gull 13 0 0 13
Herring Gull 189 1 1 43
Yellow-legged Gull 5 0 0 5
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 209 1 1 63

Rainham - 15/10/2011: A calm clear morning looked promising, however birds did not seem that interested in feeding. A second load of waste attracted what was probably somewhere in the region of 500 large gulls into the catching area. Luckily there were real safety problems and I was unable to fire which was probably good for this small and inexperienced team. Baz and myself elected to put up a jiggler when all the birds lifted. It then took some time for them to get interested again but no matter! With birds walking in from the back of the catching area safety was good and we soon had enough birds in the area to take what I thought to be about 120. Clearly my estimation is legendary and the total ended up at 202 birds! Excellent work by Mark the compactor driver again he is now becoming more of an expert than us!

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 43 1 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 96 2 2 98
Herring Gull 44 2 0 0
Yellow-legged Gull 11 0 0 11
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 195 5 2 110

Rainham - 27/08/2011: It is always interesting at this time of year and today was no exception. A small team arrived with the hope of something interesting at this time of year and we were not disappointed. Early on lots of Starlings looked like causing a problem until a Sparrowhawk spooked them all. With a good number of birds and almost certainly two Yellow-legged Gulls in the catching area I elected to fire. The catch was extracted, bagged and processed quickly and efficiently and we were pleased to find six Yellow-legs in the catch of 60 birds.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Lesser Black-backed Gull 10 0 1 11
Herring Gull 42 0 0 11
Yellow-legged Gull 6 0 0 6
Catch totals 59 0 1 29

Pitsea - 08/06/2011: Today we undertook a session at Pitsea specially for a filming session with Springwatch. The Springwatch team were looking at different types of wildlife that use landfill sites and wanted to film what the group does and talk about what the gulls using the site do. We were lucky enough to take a small catch of just enough birds to show the film crew a range of species and features for their filming. We were also amazed to find that there were around 30 Med Gulls on site and even more pleased when we managed to catch four in our small catch specifically for the film crew. This was a very interesting time to see what happens on the tip and has opened up lots of questions about where these birds are breeding and coming from at this time of year. It is likely that we will be considering some more attempts at Pitsea over the next couple of months to see if we can catch more Med Gulls.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 25 0 1 0
Mediterranean Gull 4 0 0 4
Lesser Black-backed Gull 5 0 0 5
Herring Gull 3 0 0 3
Catch totals 37 0 1 12

Rainham - 21/03/2011: With Luka from Croatia still in the UK an extra session on the Monday was planned with high hopes of increasing the numbers for the season. Best laid plans and all that!! The birds did not want to play. We suspect the warm weather ensured their minds were on things other than feeding! There was no real interest for three hours until a concerted effort from the compactor driver got a few birds in the catching area. With the weather warm and little else looking positive we took a very small token catch for something to do!! However out of the 26 birds we managed one Black-headed Gull from Latvia and a British control Lesser Black-backed Gull, not a bad ratio for such a small catch.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 16 0 1 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 7 0 1 8
Herring Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 24 0 2 9

Pitsea - 19/03/2011: A very good day with a slightly difficult start. Frosty conditions and a big team agian looked promising for a big total. However, a difficult set on the edge of the road and lots of disturbance meant we were not able to take a catch until 10:30. The sun had then got up and the temperature was too warm to enable us to set for a second time. We also had to process birds as fast as possible to stop any overheating problems, however all in all a successful day.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 287 2 1 0
Common Gull 8 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 26 0 0 25
Herring Gull 41 0 0 41
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 363 2 1 67

Rainham - 12/03/2011: An extra trip was put in today with a small and inexperienced team. Conditions were good and the set we were given was today excellent. Two loads of good transfer waste were also supplied and within ten minutes of the compactor coming off the rubbish a catch had been taken. Extraction and processing was good and the day total was very pleasing with 33 LBB Gulls colour ringed. Other highlights were a Black-headed Gull which was re-ringed which on checking turned out to be one of our birds from 1984. This bird was ringed 27 years and 22 days ago! The UK longevity record is currently 27 years 10 months 17 days so we need to retrap this bird next year again!! A good day and many thanks to the tip staff once again for their excellent assistance.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 145 1 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 31 0 2 33
Herring Gull 49 1 0 48
Catch totals 225 2 2 81

Pitsea - 05/03/2011: With the weather looking good and a large team assembled for Pitsea there were high hopes of a big day! However on arrival the waste coming into the site was clearly not the best. The set we were given was also not one of the best and to start with I was not happy that we would even take a catch. However, the compactor driver Alan helped us out and was actually fantastic in getting a little bit of food in front of the net which soon had a reasonable number of birds down. A very early opportunity presented itself and a respectable catch of 288 was taken. We decided to re-set and see what happened. After some further work by Alan, birds came back on to feed and there were three Mediterranean Gulls playing around the edge of the catching area. Eventually we got two in the catching area and elected to fire, managing to get both one being a Dutch control. Other highlights were a Danish Black-headed Gull and three of our own colour ringed Herring Gulls one of which had been to Gloucester and one to France. Overall a good day with a total of 409 and 82 large gulls colour ringed was a real success given the conditions of the tip and our set.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 238 1 1 0
Common Gull 1 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 10 0 0 10
Herring Gull 36 1 0 36
Catch totals 285 2 1 46

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 81 0 0 0
Mediterranean Gull 1 0 1 2
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 35 2 0 35
Catch totals 118 2 1 38
Trip totals 403 4 2 84

Pitsea - 05/02/2011: The weather suggested that another "planned" trip would not happen. However, sometimes perseverance is the order of the day. On arrival at the tip the set location had a tiny bit of shelter (well sort of!). I decided to set and see what happened. We waited for some time before birds settled enough to enable a catch, we had also decided to be as selective as possible. Given there were a good number of Great Black-backed Gulls in the catching area it was worth an attempt. It turned out to be well worth the attempt with 44 new GBB caught and a very respectable total of 119 new birds, 3 retraps and a Norwegian control. Next planned trip will be Rainham on 19th February.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 55 1 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 44 1 1 44
Herring Gull 20 0 0 20
Catch totals 119 2 1 64

Rainham - 29/01/2011: A small but experienced team undertook an extra session at Rainham due to the poor weather at the beginning of January. The set was quick and efficient and with no problems and a good load of waste we had a catch in the bag by 08:45am. It turned out to be a very good one of 404 new birds and 7 controls/retraps. Highlights were 2 Yellow-legged Gulls, 19 GBB and 39 LBB colour ringed plus 231 Herring Gulls ringed. Many thanks to all the team for a smooth and well executed day of large gulls and also to the tip staff and compactor drivers who once again did an excellent job.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 110 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 19 0 0 19
Common Gull 5 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 38 0 1 39
Herring Gull 230 3 3 31
Yellow-legged Gull 2 0 0 2
Catch totals 404 3 4 91

Pitsea - 22/01/2011: A tricky day with enough wind to keep birds hanging in the air making a catch difficult. Foxes also played havoc early on spooking birds several times. After some persistence and very helpful compactor drivers two catches were able to be taken with a grand total of 599 birds for the day including retraps and controls. Highlights were 23 new Great Black-backed Gulls and controls from Norway, Finland, Belgium, Poland, Lithuania and Germany. Thanks to all team members for a very smooth day and a good total for January.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 348 2 4 0
Common Gull 1 0 0 0
Herring Gull 19 0 0 18
Catch totals 368 2 4 18

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 142 2 1 0
Great Black-backed Gull 23 0 1 23
Herring Gull 56 0 0 55
Catch totals 221 2 2 78
Trip totals 589 4 6 96

Rainham - 18/12/2010: A small team decided to make one last attempt at Rainham for 2010. There was a threat of snow but it was unclear when it would arrive. We decided to try to take a 150 catch with the small net. However, the rubbish was superb and the birds hungry. Very quickly we had well over 400 birds in the catching area. Luckily there was just too much air traffic and safety issues. Eventually a lorry in the main tip drew a few birds away and we were left with about 200 and when a safe window was available a catch was taken. The catch was extracted and processed very efficiently and the last Lesser Black-backed Gull was ringed as the first snow flakes fell. It was an interesting trip back round the M25!! Final total for the day was 231 which is excellent, with 103 birds colour ringed including 34 Lesser Black-backed Gulls.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 118 2 1 0
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Common Gull 5 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 33 0 1 34
Herring Gull 67 0 2 67
Catch totals 225 2 4 103

Rainham - 11/12/2010: At last we managed to get onto Rainham. A near perfect day with good weather an excellent setting position, good loads of waste dumped and excellent co operation from the tip staff. Mark the compactor driver did a fantastic job of getting birds down and two excellent catches were taken. The highlights being an adult Yellow-legged Gull and 56 Lesser Black-backed Gulls colour ringed. Thanks to all on the team and the tip staff.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 126 0 2 0
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 0
Common Gull 1 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 32 0 1 33
Herring Gull 113 0 2 107
Catch totals 273 0 5 140

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 84 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 4 0 0 4
Common Gull 4 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 22 0 1 23
Herring Gull 55 1 0 0
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 170 1 1 28
Trip totals 443 1 6 168

Pitsea - 20/11/2010: Well the ghost of Manton finally visited the tip! A flat battery on the truck at 06:30 did not bode well as a start. On arrival we were unfortunate again to be given a spot right on the edge of the tip and on the wrong side of the wind. Although the wind was light we were forced to set firing into the wind which always means we loose birds. However, the set was quick and efficient but on going to move the truck to the firing point another flat battery! Alan the compactor driver towed me to the firing point and I elected to attempt a catch before getting the truck started. After some tense moments we managed to take a first catch of 157 birds. We re-set and when nearly complete with the first catch it looked promising - apart from the fact we had not connected the last cannon! This turned out to be fortunate as when we were all set the second catch included a Mediterranean Gull. So the overall day total of 239 was very good given the circumstances!!

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 117 3 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Common Gull 1 0 0 0
Herring Gull 34 0 0 34
Catch totals 154 3 0 36

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 68 0 0 0
Mediterranean Gull 1 0 0 1
Common Gull 1 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 3
Herring Gull 8 0 1 8
Catch totals 81 0 1 12
Trip totals 235 3 1 48

Pitsea - 06/11/2010: Warm weather again meant lots of birds on fields and not that many on the tip. A difficult set we were forced to set firing into the wind and with the small net so our options were not good to start. Lots of safety issues prevented us firing when there were lots of birds in the catching area and in the end we had to settle for two small catches when there was a safe window. A respectable total of 210 for the day. However, the highlight was Steve Arlow photographing a possible adult Thayers Gull. We await other experts to look at this bird but what I saw of it on Steve's camera all the features looked very good.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 89 1 1 0
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Common Gull 1 0 0 0
Herring Gull 16 0 0 16
Catch totals 107 1 1 17

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 78 1 0 0
Common Gull 1 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 20 0 0 19
Catch totals 100 1 0 20
Trip totals 207 2 1 37

Pitsea - 30/10/2010: It turned out to be the correct decision to go to Pitsea. A really nice setting position right next to the commercial tip. The tip team again were very helpfull finding us the best lorry they could and keeping trying with the compactor to get birds down. The effort resulted in two good catches, the second one taken by Jez Blackburn as part of his training.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 115 3 1 0
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 75 0 0 75
Catch totals 191 3 1 76

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 18 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 13 0 0 13
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 52 0 0 52
Catch totals 84 0 0 66
Trip totals 275 3 1 142

Pitsea - 25/09/2010: Weather conditions today were rather windy and I was not confident that it was going to be easy to take a catch. On arrival things got worse with our location being very restricted and next to the road the artics were using. We had one small load of household waste which was put in front of the small net we had set. For a couple of hours there were just no birds and we were getting concerned this was going to be our first blank. However, at about 10am birds appeared and three artics that dropped waste on the main tip seemed to get birds on the feed. After about half an hour we also had birds near our waste. Eventually they found the waste in front of the net. We had to wait a little while for birds to settle down as the wind was keeping them in the air a lot. The opportunity of the first clear window was taken and a respectable catch of 119 birds resulted.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 5 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 15 0 0 15
Lesser Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 3
Herring Gull 94 1 1 95
Catch totals 117 1 1 113

Pitsea - 27/03/2010: A day with few gulls on site, so clearly many had moved back out to their breeding grounds in the last few weeks. With the threat of showers we took a quick early catch of only Black-headed Gulls and re-set to see what the weather did. We were lucky enough for it to hold off and a small second catch was possible. A few Mediterranean Gulls were seen but none in the catching area.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 151 4 1 0
Mediterranean Gull 0 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 0 0 0 0
Common Gull 0 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 0 0 0 0
Herring Gull 0 0 0 0
Yellow-legged Gull 0 0 0 0
Caspian Gull 0 0 0 0
Catch totals 151 4 1 0

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 74 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Lesser Black-backed Gull 4 0 0 4
Herring Gull 31 1 0 31
Catch totals 110 1 0 36
Trip totals 261 5 1 36

Pitsea - 06/03/2010: A large team went to Pitsea today and we were lucky to get a really good load of waste from the first dustcart in. Birds were quickly down but the compactor driver running over the cable meant the spare cable had to be deployed. Luckily there was lots of food and an excellent catch of 449 birds was soon in the bag. We elected to re-set for a second attempt and after a couple of hours with a single Mediterranean Gull in the catching area we took a second catch. It was still early so we re-set for a third attempt but ended up with too many birds in the catching area so did not fire. The day total ended up at 722 new birds. Highlights were also a control Common Gull from Finland and a Black-headed Gull from Denmark.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 305 2 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Common Gull 8 0 1 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 33 0 0 33
Herring Gull 98 1 0 64
Catch totals 445 3 1 98

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 174 0 1 0
Mediterranean Gull 1 0 0 1
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Common Gull 1 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 27 0 0 26
Herring Gull 73 1 0 1
Catch totals 277 1 1 29
Trip totals 722 4 2 127

Pitsea - 20/02/2010: A day that started with the threat of rain and snow turned out fine and we were able to take two really nice catches. A large catch of small gulls first with a splattering of other gulls. The second catch was very respectable but the best thing was the groups second Caspian Gull.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 441 0 3 0
Common Gull 5 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 8 0 2 9
Herring Gull 12 0 0 3
Catch totals 466 0 5 12

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 185 0 3 0
Herring Gull 92 1 2 48
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 278 1 5 49
Trip totals 744 1 10 61

Pitsea - 06/02/2010: Yet another tough day with problems before getting to the tip with the head gasket going on the Land Rover on Thursday! Alternative arrangements were made to get the kit to the tip and a session looked possible. The set was OK apart from the fact we had to run the cable accross the road with arctics and compactors running over it. We got the rubbish rolled at first break and we had taken a catch within ten minutes. This was a good catch of 300 plus birds and we should have been happy. However, we re-set and tried for a second catch - with at least one Mediterranean Gull in the catching area - but the firing cable had been damaged making it impossible to fire. All in all a good day.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 184 1 2 0
Great Black-backed Gull 12 2 0 13
Common Gull 3 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 9 0 0 9
Herring Gull 108 1 2 52
Catch totals 316 4 4 74

Pitsea - 23/01/2010: A tricky day with mild weather, fox and Starling problems making taking a catch very difficult. Excellent perseverance from the compactor drivers allowed us to take a catch of just over 100 birds. A quick re-set attracted birds including over 1000 Starlings, which we just could not fire on. However, 76 birds were colour ringed out of the catch and there was a Belgian control Herring Gull.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 34 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 26 0 0 26
Herring Gull 50 0 1 50
Catch totals 110 0 1 76

Pitsea - 09/01/2010: A really good start to 2010 after a poor first half to the winter. The tip was full of birds and due to the cold conditions they were hungry. At first there were too many birds and safety was a problem. However, after about half an hour birds settled down and we were able to take a catch. We did not realise quite how big it was until we ran out of sacks with about 20 Herring Gulls still under the net. We ringed these birds direct from the net and took everything else off the tip and into the workshop to process. After processing we were really pleased with the number of big gulls in the catch.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 27 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 55 0 0 55
Common Gull 2 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 5 0 0 5
Herring Gull 235 3 3 53
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 1
Catch totals 325 3 3 114

Pitsea - 12/12/2009: A very quick and efficient set by an experienced team saw us set by 8am adjacent to two loads of rubbish that had been dumped the previous day. Birds were quickly down when the compactor flattened the rubbish and after a couple of lifts a catch of mainly Black-headed Gulls was taken with a few large gulls and a couple of Common Gulls mixed in. Although we reset to attempt a second, catch birds did not come back onto our waste and showers eventually forced us to pack up without a second catch.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 275 0 4 0
Common Gull 2 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 2
Herring Gull 8 0 0 8
Catch totals 287 0 4 10

Pitsea - 21/11/2009: After cancelling last Saturday due to weather, we elected to attempt a catch today as weather forecasts are not looking good for the next month. With a quick early set we were in position by 8am. Lots of birds came down but were spooked and we then had a long wait. Eventually a dust cart came in and although there was not a lot of food waste, it had enough to attract the gulls and after some excellent persistence by the compactor driver we were able to take a good catch of 219 birds.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 52 0 1 0
Great Black-backed Gull 13 0 0 13
Herring Gull 151 0 2 102
Catch totals 216 0 3 115

Pitsea - 31/10/2009: A small team arrived to difficult looking weather conditions. Although not raining on arrival, rain looked possible but it was unclear just when it would arrive. We elected to set and see what happened. Birds came down quickly on the first push of rubbish but there were two chairs in the wrong place that would have snagged the net. Birds took a while to settle again and only through the persistence of the compactor driver were we able to get them back. Due to the threat of rain a small catch was taken and quickly got under cover to process. One Lithuanian Black-headed Gull was the highlight.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 25 0 1 0
Great Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 3
Herring Gull 42 0 1 40
Catch totals 70 0 2 43

Pitsea - 17/10/2009: A good day at Pitsea today. Lots of Herring Gulls and good numbers of Great Black-backs on the tip. Black-headed Gull numbers are starting to build up. One Mediterranean Gull was seen but there was nothing else unusual. With a good early set, birds were onto the rubbish quickly. After not wanting to settle to start with and the wind keeping birds in the air a chance opened up and a catch or mainly Herring Gulls was taken. The birds were dealt with efficiently and we were packing up by 12:30.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 24 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 22 2 0 23
Herring Gull 170 2 0 54
Catch totals 216 4 0 77

Rainham - 12/09/2009: Again at Rainham, a small team set efficiently and birds were quickly down on the rubbish. Initial safety problems meant we had to wait about half an hour for a clear window to fire. However, when we did it was worth the wait with a record catch of 71 Lesser Black-backed and 8 Yellow-legged Gulls.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 1 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 69 0 2 71
Herring Gull 45 1 0 20
Yellow-legged Gull 8 0 0 8
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 0
Catch totals 124 1 2 99

Rainham - 29/08/2009: Today saw us back at Rainham for the first time since January 2008. On arrival it was clear that the predominant species was Lesser Black-backed Gull. A small but experienced team set quickly and efficiently. After a long and frustrating wait we eventually had enough birds down and a respectable catch of 77 was taken.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Lesser Black-backed Gull 56 0 1 57
Herring Gull 20 0 0 20
Catch totals 76 0 1 77

Pitsea - 21/03/2009: Today saw another visit for training from Jez Blackburn and some of his team from Norfolk. Three catches were taken today with Jez taking two of the three. Highlights were a Med Gull in the second catch. Also seen on the tip were Iceland, Glaucous, Yellow-legged and Caspian Gull all just outside the catching area! The total of 549 (including retraps and controls) was good and takes the winter total to over 4000 gulls.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 148 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 11 0 0 11
Herring Gull 101 0 1 0
Catch totals 260 0 1 11

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 100 0 2 0
Mediterranean Gull 1 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 9 0 0 9
Herring Gull 55 1 0 0
Catch totals 165 1 2 9

Catch 3

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 15 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 104 0 0 0
Catch totals 120 0 0 1
Trip totals 545 1 3 21

Pitsea - 07/03/2009: Still good numbers of gulls on the tip. With a very large team we elected for two catches. Aiming for 200 in each catch. Good numbers of Lessers were evident with 20 trapped including a Norwegian bird. The remainder of the Herring Gull colour rings were used for this winter on the first catch. A few colour ringed birds were sighted by Richard, Steve and Pete

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 101 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 9 0 0 9
Herring Gull 58 1 1 30
Catch totals 171 1 1 39

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 124 1 2 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 10 0 1 11
Herring Gull 72 0 0 0
Catch totals 206 1 3 11
Trip totals 377 2 4 50

Pitsea - 14/02/2009: Today was a tricky day. Birds at first did not want to come on to feed on the rubbish. Phil the compactor driver did a fantastic job and when we got birds it was in abundance. Foxes then became a problem for a while but eventualy a half chance presented itself and a catch was taken.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 669 2 6 0
Mediterranean Gull 2 0 0 0
Common Gull 13 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 5 0 0 5
Herring Gull 63 0 0 19
Catch totals 752 2 6 24

Pitsea - 24/01/2009: A chilly start with no wind looked perfect. Gulls at first did not want to come to feed. After about an hour birds became interested and a catch was taken with good numbers of Great Black-backed Gulls. A Glaucous Gull was seen near the catching area on a couple of occasions but evaded capture.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 25 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 46 0 1 0
Herring Gull 155 2 0 19
Catch totals 226 2 1 19

Pitsea - 10/01/2009: A very large team took two catches with a superb total of 587 birds from both catches, which included 9 Starlings. The small gulls were back in force apparently frozen out of thier normal sites after the prolonged cold spell. The highlight was a Polish ringed Med Gull and a retrap Black-headed Gull which was ringed nearly 17 years ago at Pitsea by Mr Harris.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 367 1 2 0
Mediterranean Gull 0 0 1 0
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 0
Common Gull 3 0 0 0
Herring Gull 23 0 1 0
Catch totals 394 1 4 0

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 24 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 12 0 0 0
Common Gull 1 0 1 0
Herring Gull 140 0 1 54
Catch totals 177 0 2 54
Trip totals 571 1 6 54

Pitsea - 27/12/2008: The tip was only open for the morning and with little domestic waste due to arrive, we were lucky to get a large load of mixed rubbish which was atttractive to the gulls. We managed a quick fire and just about got the catch processed in time.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 24 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 59 0 1 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 0
Herring Gull 104 0 2 19
Catch totals 188 0 3 19

Pitsea - 20/12/2008: After a week of mild weather we were concerned that the gulls would not be hungry enough to come onto the waste in the catching area. The breezy conditions allowed a lot of birds to hang in the air and for those on the ground to get easily spooked - but they were hungry. With each lift-off birds returned quickly and increasing numbers of large gulls stayed in the catching area. The resulting fire included our largest ever catch of Great Black-backed Gulls.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 19 0 0 -
Great Black-backed Gull 69 3 2 14
Herring Gull 139 0 2 79
Catch totals 227 3 4 93

Pitsea - 29/11/2008: Hoping for quick fire with the threat of rain, we were intially frustrated by the proximity of the catching area to the main tip face, with birds streaming in over the net. Eventually things settled and we were able to take a small catch.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 3 0 0 -
Great Black-backed Gull 43 0 2 44
Herring Gull 73 0 0 73
Catch totals 119 0 2 117

Pitsea - 15/11/2008: The arrangement of the tip face made it difficult to select a location for the net, and when we did efforts were frustrated by operational traffic on the tip. Eventually a reasonable catch was possible, with good numbers of Great Black-backed Gulls once again.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 7 0 0 -
Great Black-backed Gull 32 0 0 31
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 177 5 0 57
Catch totals 217 5 0 89

Pitsea - 01/11/2008: With rain forecast we elected for an early start. The gulls were clearly hungry and were soon onto the rubbish. After a frustrating 20 minutes with birds in danger, on and too close to the net, we were able to fire and took a catch of predominantly Herring Gulls. The rain started just as the pack-up was complete and the birds were ringed under cover off of the tip.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 10 0 0 -
Great Black-backed Gull 6 0 0 6
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 1
Herring Gull 166 1 0 64
Catch totals 183 1 0 71

Pitsea - 11/10/2008: Armed with our new colour rings, we were fortunate to get a couple of loads of rubbish containing a lot of food and birds were quickly attracted into the catching area. Many larger gulls walked in from beyond the range of the net. What was initially thought to be just over a hundred birds turned out to be a massive catch of mostly Herring Gulls.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 50 1 1 -
Great Black-backed Gull 4 0 0 4
Lesser Black-backed Gull 5 0 0 4
Herring Gull 316 3 3 183
Catch totals 375 4 4 191

Pitsea - 13/09/2008: Uncertain what a September catch might bring we arrived to find most birds loafing on the fields to the north of the tip. What was initially though to be a small catch was taken but our new net deploys much faster and caught more birds on the edge of the catching area than expected. We reset for a second catch and after a long wait and some encouragement from the compactor driver stirring up the rubbish, we had around 600 birds in the catching area - too many to catch safely. Suddenly most of the smaller gulls lifted leaving the Great Black-backed Gulls on thr ground. We fired almost immediately for our second ever largest catch of this species.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Great Black-backed Gull 4 0 0 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 4 0 0 -
Herring Gull 138 1 0 -
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 -
Catch totals 147 1 0

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Great Black-backed Gull 52 0 0 -
Herring Gull 30 0 0 -
Catch totals 82 0 0
Trip totals 229 1 0 0

Pitsea - 08/08/2008: An excursion to Pitsea was undertaken as part of the Rye Meads ringing course, to give delegates some experience of gull ringing and fitting larger ring sizes. A small catch was taken.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 6 0 0 -
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 1 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 7 0 0 -
Herring Gull 79 0 0 -
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 -
Catch totals 95 0 1

Pitsea - 29/03/2008: Another quick and efficient set and rubbish with plenty of food waste brought the gull in quickly. We waited a little to increase the proportion of large gulls but took an early first catch. Attempts at a second catch were frustrated by vehicle movements on the tip and the proximity of the net to where driver were closing the rear doors on their lorries. With the possibility of rain a small second catch was taken.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 43 0 1 -
Great Black-backed Gull 13 0 0 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 -
Herring Gull 92 0 0 -
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 -
Catch totals 150 0 1

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 33 0 0 -
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 -
Herring Gull 5 0 0 -
Catch totals 39 0 0
Trip totals 189 0 1 0

Pitsea - 22/03/2008: Although it was raining with gusty winds on arrival at the tip, the forecast did predict a clearer spell in mid-morning, so we sat it out. When we could see the clearer weather arriving we set quickly and had several opportunities to fire, were it not for the Starlings all over the furled net. Eventually we were able to fire safely and removed the gulls to the relative comfort of the shed off of the tip.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 12 0 0 -
Great Black-backed Gull 12 0 0 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 -
Herring Gull 112 0 0 -
Yellow-legged Gull 4 0 0 -
Catch totals 143 0 0

Pitsea - 15/03/2008: Buoyed up by our success on 23rd February, we were keen to return to Pitsea, but the weather forecast was not good. The first load of rubbish contained very little food and birds were moving on quickly, with the larger gulls hardly stopping. Concerned that the weather might curtail operations, we took a small token catch of mainly Black-headed Gulls. But is was still early so we reset and did get a much better load of rubbish delivered. The birds still did not seem keen to settle and after a wait were able to take a modest second catch.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 41 0 1 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 -
Herring Gull 1 0 0 -
Catch totals 43 0 1

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 87 0 1 -
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 6 0 0 -
Herring Gull 26 0 0 -
Catch totals 121 0 1
Trip totals 164 0 2 0

Pitsea - 23/02/2008: This was our first attempt at Pitsea for over 10 years. It was an easy set but we couldn't understand why the birds didn't want seem to want to settle, until we realised that there was a fox in the catching area. Once chased off (no easy feat) birds came back in force and a sizeable catch followed quickly. We decided to reset, but were delayed from firing again until we had emptied enough sacks from the first catch. At this time up to three Mediterranean Gulls were in the catching area, but by the time we were able to fire only one remained and was successfully caught.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 145 1 1 -
Great Black-backed Gull 4 0 0 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 -
Herring Gull 138 0 1 -
Yellow-legged Gull 2 0 0 -
Catch totals 292 1 2

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 98 0 0 -
Mediterranean Gull 1 0 0 -
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 -
Herring Gull 27 0 0 -
Catch totals 128 0 0
Trip totals 420 1 2 0

Rainham - 05/01/2008: An early start meant setting the net in the half-light. Too any birds and problems with lorries stopping in the firing line were eventaully overcome and an early catch of large gulls was taken. After resetting it was difficult to get birds to settle in tha catching area, so the second catch was mainly of Black-headed Gulls.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 88 0 0 -
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 -
Common Gull 3 0 0 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 12 0 0 -
Herring Gull 68 0 1 -
Catch totals 173 0 1

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 122 0 1 -
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 -
Common Gull 1 0 0 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 -
Herring Gull 13 0 0 -
Catch totals 141 0 1
Trip totals 314 0 2 0

Rainham - 27/12/2007: With the tip having been closed over the Christmas break expectations were high that the gulls would be hungry and easy to catch. Once we had the rubbish in th right place a catch was taken relatively quickly.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 101 0 1 -
Great Black-backed Gull 3 0 0 -
Common Gull 5 0 0 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 31 0 2 -
Herring Gull 35 0 1 -
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 -
Catch totals 176 0 4

Rainham - 15/12/2007: A difficult set right on the edge of the tip, but once ready the gulls came into the catching area very quickly and we soon took a first catch. For the second catch we wanted to wait for more large gulls and with the wind picking up birds were hanging in the air making it difficult to find a catching window. Eventually we did take a second catch that included a good number of Herring Gulls.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 123 0 3 -
Great Black-backed Gull 1 0 0 -
Common Gull 1 0 0 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 28 0 0 -
Herring Gull 50 0 0 -
Catch totals 203 0 3

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 62 0 1 -
Great Black-backed Gull 2 0 0 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 7 0 0 -
Herring Gull 57 0 1 -
Yellow-legged Gull 2 0 0 -
Catch totals 130 0 2
Trip totals 333 0 5 0

Rainham - 11/11/2007: A quick set with catching opportunities only thwarted by Starlings walking all over the net. The resulting catch included our first Caspian Gull.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 58 0 1 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 30 0 0 -
Herring Gull 64 0 0 -
Yellow-legged Gull 4 0 0 -
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 -
Catch totals 157 0 1

Rainham - 27/10/2007: Two modest catches with good numbers of Lesser Black-backed Gulls.

Catch 1

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 72 0 2 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 40 0 2 -
Herring Gull 14 0 0 -
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 -
Catch totals 127 0 4

Catch 2

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 51 0 0 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 61 0 0 -
Herring Gull 13 0 0 -
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 -
Catch totals 126 0 0
Trip totals 253 0 4 0

Rainham - 31/03/2007: The first trip of the re-formed North Thames Gull Group, returning to Rainham for the first time since 2004. The catch was exclusively of large gulls our primary target.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Lesser Black-backed Gull 34 0 0 -
Herring Gull 28 0 0 -
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 -
Catch totals 63 0 0

Westmill - 06/03/2004: A small catch, as we learn how best to utilise this site.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 87 0 0 -
Common Gull 3 0 0 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 9 0 0 -
Herring Gull 8 0 0 -
Catch totals 107 0 0

Westmill - 12/02/2004: An initial catch at this new site in Hertfordshire.

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 21 0 1 -
Great Black-backed Gull 9 0 0 -
Lesser Black-backed Gull 9 0 1 -
Herring Gull 37 0 0 -
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0 -
Catch totals 77 0 2

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Methods

The North Thames Gull Group catches gulls using a cannon net, which involves firing a large net over birds feeding on freshly spread rubbish.

Once the net is set and the cannons connected, a load of rubbish is dumped and a waste compactor vehicle spreads it out and withdraws from the catching area. When enough gulls are in the area and it is safe to do so, the net is fired.

The team of ringers then removes the gulls from under the net and temporarily places them in hessian sacks which are stored in a holding area for processing. Birds are then identified to species, aged and fitted with an uniquely numbered metal ring. Measurements may be taken to help identify the race or breeding population of the birds we are catching.

Starting in 2008 we have also started fitting colour rings (orange rings with black letters and numbers) which allows the birds to be relocated without needing to be recaptured. There are many more bird-watchers looking for colour-ringed gulls, than there are cannon netting teams, so this greatly improves our chances of understanding the movements of the birds from the Thames Estuary.

If you see a bird with one of our colour rings, please send details (ring-code, date, location, species) to

Website designed and built by Garganey Consulting

Totals

2017 calendar year

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 506 22 2 477
Great Black-backed Gull 18 0 1 19
Common Gull 37 0 1 38
Lesser Black-backed Gull 10 0 0 10
Herring Gull 491 7 2 314
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 1
Totals 1063 29 6 859

2016/17 winter

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 955 42 11 719
Mediterranean Gull 1 0 0 1
Great Black-backed Gull 49 1 1 49
Common Gull 41 0 1 42
Lesser Black-backed Gull 16 0 0 16
Herring Gull 1456 33 7 880
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 1
Hybrid Gull 2 0 0 2
Totals 2521 76 20 1710

2016 calendar year

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 1871 62 22 1096
Mediterranean Gull 5 0 2 6
Great Black-backed Gull 69 1 1 68
Common Gull 14 0 1 15
Lesser Black-backed Gull 138 0 2 140
Herring Gull 1545 41 7 935
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 1
Hybrid Gull 2 0 0 2
Totals 3645 104 35 2263

2015/16 winter

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 1459 43 13 892
Mediterranean Gull 4 0 2 5
Great Black-backed Gull 89 2 3 90
Common Gull 10 0 1 11
Lesser Black-backed Gull 141 0 2 143
Herring Gull 911 25 4 662
Yellow-legged Gull 3 0 0 3
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 1
Totals 2618 70 25 1807

2015 calendar year

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 681 17 2 695
Great Black-backed Gull 67 2 3 67
Common Gull 11 0 0 11
Lesser Black-backed Gull 27 0 1 27
Herring Gull 915 14 6 775
Yellow-legged Gull 4 0 0 4
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 1
Glaucous Gull 1 0 0 1
Hybrid Gull 1 0 0 1
Totals 1708 33 12 1582

2014/15 winter

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 962 21 7 945
Great Black-backed Gull 29 0 1 28
Common Gull 17 0 0 17
Lesser Black-backed Gull 42 0 1 42
Herring Gull 1140 12 8 976
Yellow-legged Gull 4 0 0 4
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 1
Glaucous Gull 1 0 0 1
Hybrid Gull 1 0 0 1
Totals 2197 33 17 2015

2014 calendar year

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 842 14 9 695
Mediterranean Gull 1 0 0 1
Great Black-backed Gull 30 0 1 29
Common Gull 9 0 0 9
Lesser Black-backed Gull 28 0 0 28
Herring Gull 964 13 7 798
Yellow-legged Gull 4 0 0 4
Totals 1878 27 17 1564

2013/14 winter

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 675 12 8 563
Mediterranean Gull 1 0 0 1
Great Black-backed Gull 69 0 2 68
Common Gull 3 0 0 3
Lesser Black-backed Gull 15 0 1 15
Herring Gull 907 8 5 755
Yellow-legged Gull 2 0 1 2
Caspian Gull 2 0 0 2
Totals 1674 20 17 1409

2013 calendar year

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 1808 19 17 605
Mediterranean Gull 5 0 0 5
Great Black-backed Gull 77 1 1 77
Common Gull 59 1 1 61
Lesser Black-backed Gull 53 0 1 53
Herring Gull 1110 13 5 689
Yellow-legged Gull 3 0 1 3
Caspian Gull 2 0 0 2
Totals 3117 34 26 1495

2012/13 winter

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 1818 19 15 565
Mediterranean Gull 5 0 0 5
Great Black-backed Gull 94 2 0 94
Common Gull 60 1 1 62
Lesser Black-backed Gull 52 0 0 52
Herring Gull 1209 15 7 483
Yellow-legged Gull 5 0 0 5
Totals 3243 37 23 1266

2012 calendar year

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 1479 15 13 116
Mediterranean Gull 2 0 0 2
Great Black-backed Gull 119 2 1 119
Common Gull 49 0 0 49
Lesser Black-backed Gull 77 0 2 75
Herring Gull 1674 26 17 776
Yellow-legged Gull 5 0 0 5
Kumlien's Gull 1 0 0 1
Totals 3406 43 33 1143

2011/12 winter

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 1636 14 13 0
Mediterranean Gull 2 0 0 2
Great Black-backed Gull 244 1 3 145
Common Gull 51 0 0 51
Lesser Black-backed Gull 193 2 5 194
Herring Gull 2203 33 18 849
Yellow-legged Gull 27 0 0 27
Caspian Gull 3 0 0 3
Kumlien's Gull 1 0 0 1
Totals 4360 50 39 1272

2011 calendar year

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 1765 11 11 0
Mediterranean Gull 5 0 1 6
Great Black-backed Gull 280 1 4 181
Common Gull 18 0 0 3
Lesser Black-backed Gull 244 2 7 250
Herring Gull 1617 19 8 606
Yellow-legged Gull 28 0 0 28
Caspian Gull 3 0 0 3
Totals 3960 33 31 1077

2010/11 winter

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 2265 19 14 0
Mediterranean Gull 6 0 1 7
Great Black-backed Gull 125 1 2 124
Common Gull 29 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 213 0 7 219
Herring Gull 1024 9 9 761
Yellow-legged Gull 4 0 0 4
Totals 3666 29 33 1115

2010 calendar year

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 2393 17 15 0
Mediterranean Gull 2 0 0 2
Great Black-backed Gull 135 2 0 135
Common Gull 33 0 1 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 181 0 5 184
Herring Gull 1233 10 14 775
Yellow-legged Gull 2 0 0 2
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 1
Totals 3980 29 35 1099

2009/10 winter

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 1952 7 16 0
Mediterranean Gull 1 0 0 1
Great Black-backed Gull 134 4 0 136
Common Gull 21 0 1 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 213 0 5 216
Herring Gull 1135 11 11 546
Yellow-legged Gull 9 0 0 9
Caspian Gull 2 0 0 1
Totals 3467 22 33 909

2009 calendar year

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 1950 4 18 0
Mediterranean Gull 3 0 1 0
Great Black-backed Gull 100 2 1 39
Common Gull 19 0 1 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 172 0 4 176
Herring Gull 1207 7 7 366
Yellow-legged Gull 8 0 0 8
Caspian Gull 1 0 0 0
Totals 3460 13 32 589

2008/09 winter

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 1692 5 13 0
Mediterranean Gull 3 0 1 0
Great Black-backed Gull 333 3 7 99
Common Gull 17 0 1 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 64 0 1 52
Herring Gull 1993 14 11 597
Yellow-legged Gull 2 0 0 0
Totals 4104 22 34 748

2008 calendar year

Species Ringed Retraps Controls Colour ringed
Black-headed Gull 788 2 6 0
Mediterranean Gull 1 0 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 309 3 6 99
Common Gull 4 0 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 48 0 0 6
Herring Gull 1704 10 9 475
Yellow-legged Gull 9 0 0 0
Totals 2863 15 21 580

2007/08 winter

Species Ringed Retraps Controls
Black-headed Gull 1136 1 13
Mediterranean Gull 1 0 0
Great Black-backed Gull 44 0 0
Common Gull 10 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 226 0 4
Herring Gull 715 0 4
Yellow-legged Gull 16 0 0
Caspian Gull 1 0 0
Totals 2149 1 21

2007 calendar year

Species Ringed Retraps Controls
Black-headed Gull 467 0 8
Great Black-backed Gull 6 0 0
Common Gull 6 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 231 0 4
Herring Gull 261 0 2
Yellow-legged Gull 10 0 0
Caspian Gull 1 0 0
Totals 982 0 14

2006/07 winter

Species Ringed Retraps Controls
Lesser Black-backed Gull 34 0 0
Herring Gull 28 0 0
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0
Totals 63 0 0

2004 calendar year

Species Ringed Retraps Controls
Black-headed Gull 108 0 1
Great Black-backed Gull 9 0 0
Common Gull 3 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 18 0 1
Herring Gull 45 0 0
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0
Totals 184 0 2

2003/04 winter

Species Ringed Retraps Controls
Black-headed Gull 108 0 1
Great Black-backed Gull 9 0 0
Common Gull 3 0 0
Lesser Black-backed Gull 18 0 1
Herring Gull 45 0 0
Yellow-legged Gull 1 0 0
Totals 184 0 2

Prior to 2007

Historical data from the Basildon Ringing Group may contain minor errors

Species Ringed Retraps Controls
Mediterranean Gull 3 0 1
Black-headed Gull 14028 200 159
Common Gull 1088 7 8
Lesser Black-backed Gull 187 2 3
Herring Gull 1363 8 14
Great Black-backed Gull 513 2 2
Totals 17179 219 187


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