Photo above by Steve Arlow, for more photos click on Steve's site:http://www.birdersplayground.co.uk/Recent%20Images.htmlAbove and below photo shows the Slaty Backed Gull present this afternoon, these poor shots were taken by myslef with just a 15x optical zoom lens.
"It goes like this" I had planned with Steve to hit the tip for an "in the week" visit instead of the regular Saturday visits. As the alarm went off at 05:45 I felt rough with this cold ive had for a few days and so sent Steve a text saying I didnt feel to good and was going to give it a miss. Later that morning whilst having a walk to get a cuppa locally Steve sent me a text advising he just had an Iceland Gull. So still feeling rough I made way on to site. Arriving on site at 12:30 I joined Steve and we bagan going through the melle which was manic today, so many trucks going in, a 2nd winter Caspian Gull showed well and then mid afternoon the Iceland finally gave up the ghost, a nice coffee coloured, compact 1st winter individual which was in the middle of the melle but got flushed by the bulldozer before we managed to get any photos! We talked of calling it a day at 16:00hrs and as the bright sun began to set we continued to scan the melle constantly to the left and right of us trying to relocate the Iceland in order to get a record shot, Steve was scanning out of the front windscren whilst I was scanning out the side window when Steve said "I got the F****ing Slaty Backed! I scanned to where he was looking and just at that moment the bird took to the air with its pink legs hanging below and flew staight at us and past the windscreen allowing views of the streaking of the head, and overall upperparts,wing tips before we lost the bird in flight but luckily soon relocated now in the 2nd melle to the right side. The light was awfull and we were looking directly in to the sun. We looked at the bird through bins and then looked at each other and smiled and shook hands, it was at this point reality set in and I told Steve to "Get the F****ing Camera!! Steve managed to get to the landrover, grab his camera and shoot off a couple of shots, this was all happening as the tip was shutting for the day! "What a day" Second Winter Caspian Gull photos above and below and video clip at bottom.