Wednesday, 25 April 2012

25th April 2012 Birling 6pm - 8.30pm S6 Overcast with showers

Gannet 55E
Scoter 40E
Mediterranean Gull 3E (all 1w)
Common Gull 10E
Little Gull 3E
Bonxie 9E
Arctic Skua 32E
Sandwich Tern 10E
Commic Tern 2E
Little Tern 1 caught and killed by an Arctic Skua that was displaced by a GBbGull
Auk sp. 2E

Great Black-backed Gull with dead Little Tern

The sad sight of a Great Black-backed Gull snacking on a dead Little Tern having robbed an Arctic Skua of its prey. Whilst familiar with Arctic Skuas piratical pursuits of other species, I was surprised to see one kill a Tern. I was therefore equally surprised to read that killing birds accounts for 95% of prey for some individuals with Ptarmigan(!) the largest prey recorded (Olsen & Larsson 1997).