|Common Gull - ST177.028|
Searching for ringed birds is a branch of Ornithology which very few birdwatchers attempt to partake in. Colour-ringed birds are usually fairly easy targets in order to obtain the codes on the ring. Metal-ring's pose a far greater challenge, as readers of my blog will no doubt be aware of. The number of these 'metals' that I have recorded partial numbers for during this winter, is quite frankly - staggering.
However, completed ring-numbers, do have their rewards for the effort in trying to obtain these. None more so than the Common Gull, which I spotted at Antrim Marina recently. Having initially sighted this suspected Finnish gull, two weeks later, I secured the ring number - ST177.028 .
Today, I received this email from Jörgen Palmgren.
The Common Gull you have photographs of in your blog is ringed in
August 1995 in Maaninka, eastern part of Finland. This is going to be
the westernmost recovery of a Finnish Common Gull. Congratulations! A
complete recovery letter arrives to your e-mail within few weeks.
A truly magnificent sighting and my best 'metal' to date. Not only is it the first Finnish Common Gull to be recorded in Northern Ireland, but also it's age at around 20 years and 5 months - the oldest bird I have yet recorded. The distance from Maaninka, Finland to Antrim Marina, is a cool 2,108km / 1,304 miles. I am presuming that this may well be a first sighting, as 'metal-numbers' are difficult to secure.
My thanks go to Jörgen for his email.
Common Gull - Finland ST177.028 - Antrim Marina (28 Feb 2016)
The Ring Stitched Together
Manninka, Finland to Antrim Marina, Northern Ireland