Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Wild Bird Wednesday 82 - Silver Gull

Australia is not overly blessed with gulls - and the silver gull is by far the most common.  This is the generic "seagull" of family holidays, chips shop hit and run raids and sporting ovals.

Most of the time, if you see a gull in Australia it's one of these.

The scientific name of the species - Chroicephalus novaehollandiae  - hides a little history of this continent country.  This is another bird that has been reclassified recently and was formally placed in the genus Larus, and many references on the web still call it that.

Australia was once known as New Holland and a number of species have the specific name novaehollandiae.  I think its a bit of a shame the name changed really, because the old name meant the "ravenous sea bird for New Holland" - which, apart from the name of the country is a decent description of this bird!

The adults are about 40 cm long - which is just a bit bigger than a Black-Headed Gull or a Laughing Gull - and as ever for gulls, they sport a fine set of white and grey feathers.  In full breeding condition the legs and beak are bright red.  This bird is just past its best on the red front!

It was only when I had a look at the images when I got home that I noticed just how spiky the bush this bird is in looks - I don't normally do this,  but I can't help but think that the bird is saying "ouch"!




These pictures were taken on Mud Islands, just off the coast of Queenscliff, on the same trip that produced the Crested Terns from last week.  If you are in this part of the world, its a trip you should consider.

Now its your turn (note correct spelling!).  SM


58 comments:

TexWisGirl said...

(turned the tern back to turn.) :)

nice shots of the gull! i totally agree on the 'ouch' factor!

thanks for hosting, stewart!

Stuart Price said...

Don't see too many gulls perched in trees........

Mama Zen said...

It does look like he's saying ouch!

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

I can almost hear that guy holler! Bill has a tiny (quiet) snit-fit whenever anyone uses the term 'seagull'. We see quite a variety of gulls (on one or the other coast). And by the way, not everyone would use the word 'blessed' when they were speaking of having gulls in their area.

Sylvia K said...

Beautiful bird and great captures as always, Stewart! And, yes, I do think he's saying OUCH!! Hope your week is off to a good start!
Sylvia

Optimistic Existentialist said...

I really do think that the bird is saying ouch. I would be!!

HOOTIN ANNI said...

That tree it's perched in looks a bit lethal!!

Andrea said...

He may well be saying "ouch" in seagull speak ... but if he were me, I would be saying something slightly more profound which would violate the good manners rule on our blogs. Great pictures, Stewart. I don't know why people don't like gulls ... maybe because there are so many of them and they can become pesty if you are sporting any kinds of treats. But if you look at them, they are truely beautiful birds and they deserve a place in the bird world. Have a great week, Steward and I loved your underwater shots ... wish you had been able to see the Weedy Sea Dragon. I went to your link and what an amazing ... fish?, animal? ... I don't know how to classify it. But it is awesome! Thanks again for teaching me new stuff. My brain overfloweth ... :)

Andrea @ From The Sol

Gunilla Bäck said...

It's a beautiful gull. The bush looks like a lot of ouch.

EG CameraGirl said...

Pretty gull. I seem to be one of the few people I know who like gulls. :)

Gordon said...

That was very interesting Stewart, and a smart bird to-boot.
All the best Gordon.

Carletta said...

After noticing the spiky bush you have to wonder if that open mouth was because he/she landed wrong. :)
Excellent captures Stewart!
I really like the background color. It really helps to highlight this lovely gull.

Gordon said...

That was very interesting Stewart, and a smart bird to-boot.
All the best Gordon.

Grampy said...

Fine capture.

John @ Sinbad and I on the Loose said...

Wonderful images with the blurred background to isolate your subject. Well done Stewart.

R. Mac Wheeler said...

nice shots :O)

Connie Smiley said...

Ouch indeed! The way he's lifting his foot in the last shot would surely confirm it.

Really great shots, Stewart. That first one is superb.

cobie en bas van Es said...

wonderlijk hoe z,on vogel tussen de stekels door kan zitten.

Les Fous du Cap said...

A seagull standing on a tree? ;-)
Céline & Philippe

Gail Dixon said...

Love how his orange mouth matches his orange feet. What a delightful bird. And great shots!

Karen said...

Yikes, you'd think that would hurt it's feet. I don't think I've seen a gull perched on a tree before.

raf said...

Splendid shots of the silver gull! A bit surprising there isn't more diversity in the gull family there.

Gemma Wiseman said...

It is unusual to see a gull on a spiky bush like this. But the bush makes an interesting frame highlighting the gull's shape and tone.

Sharon Wagner said...

He looks out of place on that thorny branch. But it sure makes for a cool photo.

Chris Rohrer said...

This is truly a beautiful gull.....I love the name, but the eyes are striking.....what a lovely gray/silver looking gull. And the orange legs are quite the contrast. I learn so much about your birds. When I finally earn enough money, I think I'll find Australia and New Zealand some of my favorite places to bird:)

Beth @ E. Lizard Breath Speaks said...

birds always have the luck of having the coolest legs ever. bright orange at that. neat!! ( :

Montanagirl said...

Really pretty photos of the Gull. I think maybe ouch is right - don't think he'd want to sit down on those spikes!

Skye said...

Beautiful gulls! I love their bright orange feet! They loo very similar to the sea-gulls here in NJ - they might be the same but I would need to look.

eileeninmd said...

Cute shots of your Silver Gull. Are you sure the gull isn't saying feed me. Thanks for hosting, have a happy week!

DeniseinVA said...

Great info on the silver gull Stewart, and wonderful photos. I am linking up today.

Christian Perrin said...

Great write up and photo, and yes, that bush looks painful!

I always assumed the Silver Gull was a 'normal' sized Gull until I moved to London and saw the gigantic Herring Gulls. Very intimidating birds!

Brian King said...

LOL! These are nice shots! You can almost feel his pain.

Nora at Island Rambles said...

Beautiful Gull...so white. I really like gulls. He is saying "ouchie"

mick said...

Great photos of the Silver Gulls. At least down your way you do have the chance of seeing a few of the other gulls - up here they are rarities and "twitchers" drive for hours to see one!

Lea said...

I am always amazed to see web-footed birds perched in trees or bushes.
Beautiful photos!
Lea

Rebecca said...

Ha! Ouch :)
Great photos! Thanks for hosting!

Rajesh said...

Very lovely bird.

CountryMouse said...

Yes I think it would being saying ouch as well. Great photos.

Minoru Saito said...

Hi! Nice captures. Thanks for sharing.

Margaret Adamson said...

HI Stewert Yes you are right about his cry! These Gulls are so white with their wonderful red mouth and red legs. Thanks for losing. I like the new way to link. Great and easy

Findlay Wilde said...

They are good looking gulls. You'll see lots more here when you gone back to visit. From Findlay

Forest Dream Weaver said...

Amazingly the know how to negotiate these natural hazards.
Beautiful shots!

Ruby

Weekend-Windup said...

Beautiful shot of gull!! I think the thorns don't prick them...

Irma said...

Beautiful bird and great captures as always, Stewart!

Kerri Farley said...

Oh he's lovely! What a striking eye ..... truly Superb shots!

(◔‿◔) said...

Wow, thats great shots. I love the wild birds. Thanks for sharing, for hosting this nice project and happy weekdevider, Wieczora (◔‿◔) | my photoblog

Phil Slade said...

It's the bright eye and eye ring which really makes this one stand out Stewart. Yes, I don't like the experts playing around with names either but they know best because they always tell us so. Thanks for hosting once again.

Dave said...

For all their relative "nuisance" value, gulls are smart looking birds and often are very photogenic subjects, this Silver Gull is just that...... good results with these three images.

thewovenspoke said...

He/she looks like it is telling you off! Nice shot as always. Dawn

edenhills said...

Pretty birds. Even in my landlocked state, we see an occasional gull.

babsjeheron said...

Lovely gull photos, Stewart, and the red coloring is remarkable even if it is past prime, as you say!

Jen said...

Funny you mention laughing gulls...there are a few in the photos of my post this week. I like all seabirds. Thanks for hosting.

Phyllis Oller said...

such a pretty bird! I don`t believe I`ve ever saw a gull in a tree!Thank-you for sharing & hosting,Phyllis

pattisjarrett said...

That's a lovely gull, and definitely a spiky tree! I like the red coloring, not something we see here.

Ramakrishnan Ramanathan said...

Adorable & charming - beautifully balanced on prickly thorns !

bailey-road.com said...

Wonderful shots of this beautiful gull.

bettyl-NZ said...

These are the gulls I see most here in NZ. They certainly have some attitudes!

Mary Howell Cromer said...

Gulls are such fun chaps to observe and this guy looks like a great one...it could have been smiling at you.
We have had COLD weather, icing on top of snow and more snow expected, miserable Winter, so looking forward to Spring.
Take care~