Late November Gulls

After many days with south winds and warm weather this morning, with a north breeze and partly cloudy skies, was perfect for gulling in Heraklion harbour. A good combination of Gull taxa present:

The star of the day was this Baltic Gull, (a male ringed as pullus in Finland in 1995) that came back again to winter here, for 3rd time:

The same bird with a presumed heuglini:

And again with a michahellis and 3 other adults of the fuscus complex, probably all three being intermedius, but what about the one on 1st winter plumage? :

Most probably a heuglini, pink legs, large size:

A nice looking michahellis:

And the most characteristic adult heuglini, a well known individual now!:

Two more of the fuscus complex, probably an intermedius on the back and a (female?) heuglini in front:

A Larus cacchinnans and a presumed intermedius:

Another "fuscus type" with 3 young birds, all probably from the same problematic taxon:

Two different birds in 2nd winter plumage, probably one intermedius, one fuscus:

What about this one? a western type LBBG or a Baltic? something else? any suggestion? :

Michahellis 1st winter:

And michahellis on 2nd winter plumage:


I also give some picture of difficult cases, pictures taken on Nov 6.

A small-sized and short-billed Gull, a possible Larus armenicus:

An interesting young bird, probable michahellis, see bill:

A sub-adult Caspian?:

And another small-sized bird with a grey mantle lighter for being a heuglini or a graelssii, rosy legs, see it with a 1st winter michahellis:

And alone:

Late October Gulls: armenian, steppe or other?

More Gulls present now in Heraklion harbour. A morning count give as many as 200 michahellis and several darker birds of fuscus complex, with many problematic cases.

On 27th the picture shows a typical Baltic fuscus with a presumed heuglini, compare sizes! :

On the same date a strange individual appeared among the group of michahellis, have a look the darker bird on the back:

Shape of head and long bill cachinnans type, mantle darker grey than michahellis present, legs not so yellow and longer. Another case of a possible barabensis?

Today, 31st a (female?) LBBG appearing as a typical intermedius came very close to me to be a star:

But next one was the most interesting in the company:

Most probably a 2nd winter armenicus? Compare it with the 1st winter and the adult michahellis at the next picture. Small size, mantle color, long legs. Also characteristic bill.

Late September harbour Gulls

Adult michahellis:

3rdcalyear michahellis:

2ndcalyear michahellis:

Intermedius type bird, with some body moult:

A possible 1stcalyear heuglini, most probably the same individual of early Sep:

Adult candidate heuglini, a huge bird:

Early September, few gulls but interesting ones!

Primary moulting season continues for YLGs.

A sec-cal-year, presumed also michahellis:

A candidate 1st cal year michahellis which looks already pale in early September on Crete:

This individual could be a heuglini (dark feathers, whitish head, body moult, longish legs):

And this one an audounii, rare on harbour! (thanks to friends that noticed that!):

First Recovery

Unfortunatelly a dead one found by Apostolis Christopoulos (photographer) on August 21, in Aposelemis river mouth, on north coast of Crete, just 18 km SE of the ringing locality - Dia.

We hope in live birds findings in the near future...

Now, gulls of Crete are almost all gone away, few tens of YLG only seen, we wait the fuscus early September arrivals...

Colour Ringing of YLGs on Crete. Part 4: YLGulls

Already fledged young, wet or not:

Its first flight:

Fledged one:

Not fledged one:

Still some eggs:

Chick a big one trying to hide:

Parents aggressive above:


The colony on Petalidi: