Gulling success

Without reflecting a too selfish picture of me I have never browsed the Collins Bird Guide (for Europe) for a while. Simply there was no need to confirm an identification. Today my young birding mate picked me up and we headed to the Ferencmajor fishponds to look for the gulls. As yesterday I missed to find the Pallas’s Gull, as I had only a few minutes to look around, we hoped to find it among the night roosting gulls.

At our arrival we found only about 60 Black-headed Gulls on the muddy ground but no large gulls were seen. After waiting about 1.5 hours suddenly all the birds took off. As usual we searched for a raptor over the drained pond but we could only see a large gull heading towards us. We both spotted the gull by our binoculars and realized its large body size and bill. I soon found the bird in the viewfinder of the spotting scope and could follow its movement even at 50x magnification.

The flushed Black-headed Gulls have never returned back as they moved towards the Old Lake, Tata such as the ‘great’ gull. The gull was huge billed with wide black tail band and dark hind neck collar. I could not find any literature on the moulting phases and timing of Pallas’s Gull. Our gull looked like the bird on this image found on BirdGuides page. I was confident we saw the yesterday’s Pallas’s Gull. It probably spends the night on the Old Lake in Tata but we stayed at the fishponds until dusk in gorgeous orange lights.


Having no relevant image for the first three paragraph here is an image of the recorded Black-winged Stilt. © Gyorgy Szimuly

Other birds of interest:
Pygmy Cormorant 50
White-tailed Eagle 1 ad
Black-winged Stilt 2
Pied Avocet 13
Little Ringed Plover 32
Common Ringed Plover 1
Eurasian Curlew 1
Ruff 3
Pallas’s Gull 1 2y
Black-headed Gull 60
Barn Swallow 35 (migrating)



Spectacular sunset at the Ferencmajor fishponds this evening. © Gyorgy Szimuly


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