Sunday, January 27, 2013

Ring-billed returns

Last winters ring-billed gull re-appeared on the canal last week but has been very un-predictable in its appearances. I have seen it a few times going to and from college but never when I have had time to stop. Spent the morning there throwing out bread and it continued to ellude the camera or sketch book.
I have been checking an area of wasteground on my way to college all winter which attracts a good number of large gulls most days. There has been atleast 3 great black backs most of the winter but in the last week, numbers have built up. This 3rd winter herring gull caught my eye as a caspian candidate on jizz, but plumage didn't back it up. I would like to get a good oppurtunity to study caspians and their structure.
 The long, parrellel edged bill, streaked nape, long wings and legs and quite an upright stance, especially as it walked helped it stand out. Have a lot to learn about gulls.

 A few studies of herring gulls from during the week. It is a handy place to sit and sketch birds, though the surrounding fence makes it a bit frustrating as any little movement by the gulls means I have have to adjust position.
 This sub adult argentatus was on the wasteground on 25, it was a real monster of a bird, larger, heavier and darker backed than the surrounding birds with huge white primary tips.
 While sketching the gulls during the week a flock of more than 70 waxwings landed in beside me, unfortunately they didn't hang around for long. I had 20 the previous day near college but they were the first in over almost a month. This flock contained a lot of adults compared with the mostly juv flocks before christmas. Wonder if the current wave is a fresh arrival following the cold weather further east.
This cattle egret was sketched earlier in the month in Donegal near Inch lake, finally got around to scanning it.

1 comment:

  1. These are really cool! I love the colors used. You can really tell he took the time to study the animal before painting it.