Saturday, 24 October 2015

Bird of the week - Black-headed gull

The black-headed gull (Chroicocephalus ridibundus) is a handsome bird in summer and then lives up to its name. Chroicephalus is Greek for coloured head and ridibundus is sort of Latin for laughs a lot.  In fact the birds look a bit glum in these photos taken on the Farne Islands in June.

In winter it is a bit less distinguished, especially when plodding round in the mud.  It still doesn't look happy.

Black-headed gulls are common all year round up here in the North and breed in Gosforth Park.  It looks from the Bird Atlas as though they are less common in the west and south, particularly as breeding birds.

Read more about black-headed gulls here.  Listen to the BBC Radio 4 Tweet of the Day on black-headed gull here.

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