04 October 2011

Peregrine v Herring Gull

Dai Roberts wrote: 'I was down Whiteford yesterday out on the sand bank / rocks extending to the lighthouse carefully looking out for waders - educational reasons of course! There were a flock of mainly herring gulls perched on the bank behind me and I looked around when I heard a commotion. The main flock were just taking off rising into the air, very upset indeed. Two amid the crowd, did not take off as they were fighting. A closer look and I realised one of them was a peregrine falcon and it was wrestling with what appeared to be a juvenile herring gull. This went on for a couple of minutes, the gull making a lot of noise. The other gulls took no helpful movements and just flew off out onto the water. I did not see the peregrine make contact, but I suspect it did not strike the gull in the air, or if so very low down indeed. The gull fought well poor thing and did not look as if it had been stunned because it was hit in flight. I always thought gulls were immune to peregrine attack?'


Anonymous said...

Great action shots Dai. Over the years the South Wales Peregrine Monitoring Group have recorded Herring Gull, Common Gull, Black-headed Gull and Kittiwake as prey of Peregrines within our south-central Wales study area. Waders feature very strongly with 16 species recorded as prey. Also 4 species of Tern including a Sandwich Tern ringed in Sweden and Common Terns from west Africa and Holland. Other notable recoveries include a Redpoll from the Isle of May, Scotland, Blackbirds from Helgoland Island, Germany and North Ronaldsay, Orkney, Fieldfares from Finland and Norway and Woodcock from northern France. Closer to home, no fewer than 7 Welsh ringed Dipper have been recovered. Colin

Mark Hipkin said...

Fascinating account Dai and nicely illustrated. Very interesting information from Colin also, thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

thanks for sharing Colin, you forgot to add Sand Martin that was rung on the river Seinne, Andy