Mediterranean Gulls.

I had posted some distant pictures of Mediterranean gulls taken at Titchfield Haven earlier in the year. Today on the beach at Calshot I spotted 3 of these good looking gulls within a flock of Black-headed gulls. These birds were quite happy to come fairly close so I took the opportunity to grab some pictures. The Mediterranean gull is slightly larger than a black-headed gull, with an all-black head in the breeding season. Their beaks and legs are orange.

A very rare UK bird until the 1950s, Its numbers have increased and today recorded numbers published by the RSPB are UK breeding:600-630 pairs UK wintering:1,800 birds compare this to the Black-headed gull numbers UK breeding:140,000 pairs UK wintering:2.2 million birds.

Comparison shot of Mediterranean gull and Black headed gull.