Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Irish trip day three - Dingle and north Kerry

Another day of sunshine out here in western Ireland. Having stayed the night in Dingle, it was just a few steps across the road to the harbour for a pre-breakfast mooch about where the first wingers started to reveal themselves. Typically, the beasts from the north were in full effect sniffing out any sort of bullying opportunities. All the juvenile birds up until now had been nice and large, white looking individuals but one of the Dingle harbour juveniles was a bit warmer toned.

juvenile Glaucous Gulls Dingle, County Kerry 18th February 2014
After a few looks around the harbour and the adjacent estuary at Milltown, there were eventually 13 white-winged gulls present - 3 Kumlien's Gulls (an adult and two juveniles), 6 Glaucous Gulls (2 adults and 4 juveniles) and 4 Iceland Gulls (near-adult, 3rd-winter, 2nd-winter and juvenile), as well as a 1st-winter Med Gull.

adult (above) and juvenile (below) Kumlien's Gulls Dingle, County Kerry 18th February 2014
Nearby swoops of the beaches to the west netted a pretty mega 10 Glaucs together on the small beach at Ferriter's Cove - all adults except for a 3rd-winter and a juvenile. Ventry had a couple of Med Gulls, but despite the numbers of birds, little else of note. And this theme continued for the rest of the day, with checks of Fermoyle, Lough Gill (where admittedly there were 3 Pink-footed Geese), Kilshannig, Carrahane, Black Rock, the Cashen Estuary and Tarbert revealing very little. The only exception to this was a late lunch stop at Blennerville where an adult Ring-billed Gull and juvenile Iceland Gull were on the estuary, while the newly built Tralee Wetlands (or perhaps better named boating lake!) produced a couple of showy Ring-billed Gulls, a slightly retarded looking second-winter while another bird that's presumably a 3rd-winter bird: -

Ring-billed Gulls Tralee Wetlands, County Kerry 18th February 2014

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