If you would like to read my Dorset nature notes about any of these featured species or sites please click on the post title

About Me

My photo

I have been interested in nature for most of my life but since I retired I spend as much time as I can exploring the nature reserves and wildlife hotspots of my adopted home, Dorset in southern England. Whilst out I record what I see and take snaps where I can (I am no photographer!) and that forms the basis of my Nature of Dorset website. When I find something new I like to research it and write about it in my nature notes, it is how I learn and hopefully you might find my notes helpful as well!

This website is for the people of Dorset interested in wildlife and for people from elsewhere interested in the wildlife of Dorset!

24 June, 2010

Black Headed Gull (Laris ridibundus)

Mr and Mrs, side by side so you can compare; not much to distinguish them is there? The male, at the back, is slightly larger and has a slightly more stout bill. It has slightly more chocolate on its face.

In fact, despite being Black Headed Gulls they are not black headed gulls at all! The colouring is chocolate brown rather than black and it is their face, not their head, that is coloured. A common gull in these parts, nesting on Brownsea Island and around Poole Harbour and various other coastal locations where there are shingle banks or islands.

It will not be long now before they begin to moult and they will lose that lovely dark head plumage and they will become white faced with just a dark comma shape behind the ear.

In winter the numbers will be reinforced by incomers from further north.