Herring Gull (Larus argentatus)
Species
Herring Gull (Larus argentatus). Taken at Fishguard, Pembrokeshire, on May 8th 2014.
Taken at Fishguard, Pembrokeshire, on May 8th 2014.
(1/640th at f13. Click image for larger version. © David Hastings)
Herring Gull (Larus argentatus). Taken on Bryher, Isles of Scilly on April 19th 2011.
Taken on Bryher, Isles of Scilly on April 19th 2011.
(1/320th sec at f16. Click image for larger version. © David Hastings)
Herring Gull (Larus argentatus). 2nd summer bird. Taken at Farmoor, Oxon., on May 13th 2018.
2nd summer bird. Taken at Farmoor, Oxon., on May 13th 2018.
(1/200th sec at f13. Click image for larger version. © David Hastings)
Herring Gull (Larus argentatus). 1st summer bird. Taken at Farmoor, Oxon., on September 6th 2015.
1st summer bird. Taken at Farmoor, Oxon., on September 6th 2015.
(1/800th sec at f14. Click image for larger version. © David Hastings)

Description

L: 54 - 60 cm; WS: 123 - 148 cm

Herring Gulls have light grey backs, white under parts, and black wing tips with white 'mirrors'. Their legs and feet are pink, and they have heavy, slightly hooked bills marked with a red spot. They gain adult plumage at just over three years of age. Thus, for most of the year, four age-groups are recognizable, but during late summer a fifth age-group (newly fledged birds) can be seen.

They can be found throughout the year around the coast, and inland around rubbish tips, fields, reservoirs and lakes, especially during winter.

As with other gulls, the combination of inland reservoirs and rubbish dumps exactly suits their needs.

Herring Gulls often soar high up in stable air masses, often in large parties.

This species is on the amber list, as over half of their UK breeding population is confined to fewer than ten sites. About 139000 pairs breed in Britain, and around 380000 birds over-winter here.

Sightings

12-Aug-2018 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (6juv)
24-Jun-2018 : Ravenglass, Cumbria
23-Jun-2018 : Ravenglass, Cumbria
09-Jun-2018 : Titchwell Marsh, Norfolk (4)
02-Jun-2018 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (4+)
24-May-2018 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (3)
18-May-2018 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (2)
13-May-2018 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (3)
11-May-2018 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (1)
25-Apr-2018 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (2)
01-Apr-2018 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (2)
06-Mar-2018 : Baulking, Oxon (1)
04-Mar-2018 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon
23-Feb-2018 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon
15-Feb-2018 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon
12-Feb-2018 : Radley Lakes, Oxon
04-Feb-2018 : Radley Lakes, Oxon
28-Jan-2018 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon
18-Jan-2018 : Slimbridge, Glos
15-Jan-2018 : Radley Lakes, Oxon
03-Jan-2018 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (6)

26-Dec-2017 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon
18-Dec-2017 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (2)
19-Nov-2017 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (1)
05-Nov-2017 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (1)
31-Oct-2017 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon
09-Oct-2017 : Titchwell Marsh, Norfolk
20-Sep-2017 : Radipole Lake, Dorset
19-Sep-2017 : Portland Bill, Dorset
12-Sep-2017 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (6+)
31-Aug-2017 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (2)
20-Aug-2017 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (3juv)
01-Aug-2017 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (1)
28-Jan-2017 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (10+)

02-Oct-2016 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (1)
04-Sep-2016 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon
28-Aug-2016 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon
19-Aug-2016 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (2+)
13-Aug-2016 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon
02-Jun-2016 : Lymington-Keyhaven NR, Hants
01-Jun-2016 : Lymington-Keyhaven NR, Hants
21-Feb-2016 : Rushy Common, Oxon (1)
16-Jan-2016 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (2)
04-Jan-2016 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon (6)

06-Dec-2015 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon
25-Oct-2015 : Hunstanton, Norfolk
24-Oct-2015 : Titchwell Marsh, Norfolk
13-Sep-2015 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon
12-Sep-2015 : Radley Lakes, Oxon
06-Sep-2015 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon
30-Aug-2015 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon
17-Jun-2015 : Lynton/Lynmouth, Devon
01-May-2015 : Arne, Dorset
30-Apr-2015 : Durdle Door, Dorset
29-Apr-2015 : Lulworth Cove, Dorset
06-Apr-2015 : Stratfield Brake, Oxon (2)
21-Feb-2015 : Radley Lakes, Oxon
02-Jan-2015 : Thrupp Lane, Radley, Oxon (1)

06-Dec-2014 : Radley Lakes, Oxon
09-Nov-2014 : Farmoor Reservoir, Oxon
20-Jul-2014 : Calvert Jubilee, Oxon (2)
01-Jul-2014 : Bempton Cliffs, E. Yorks
16-Jun-2014 : Whelford Pools, Glos (2)
25-May-2014 : Otmoor, Oxon (c10)
08-May-2014 : Fishguard, Pembrokeshire
08-May-2014 : Strumble Head, Pembrokeshire
08-May-2014 : Newport, Pembrokeshire
06-May-2014 : Martin's Haven, Pembrokeshire
06-May-2014 : Skomer, Pembrokeshire
05-May-2014 : Pant, Ceredigion (1)
04-May-2014 : Mwnt, Ceredigion
04-May-2014 : Teifi Estuary, Ceredigion
30-Mar-2014 : Radley Lakes, Oxon (3)
19-Jan-2014 : Otmoor, Oxon