Thank you for all the very positive comments and clicks on my Geese upload and very special thanks to Ken(Franken), Ann (EAS) and lin(Sweetpea62) for their UA's and to Flamesworddragon for the guest editor award.
I have had no time to do much this week but managed to get out to Ham Wall yesterday afternoon. Appalling weather and very little happening other than a nice flyby by a large family of Gadwall. Then I noticed what I thought was a Herring gull pulling something onto one of the platforms that have been put out for birds to rest on.
This 'something' seemed to be a young Moorhen (dead) and the gull stomped around pulling at the carcass (V1) for a while then picked it up by the head (V2) and tried to swallow it whole (V3).
He did not succeed as it got stuck at the pelvis and he regurgitated the whole bird. He tried this on six successive occasions and failed each time but in between was picking and pulling at the carcass.
On the seventh try he managed to get the dead moorhen past the pelvis by dint of some squats and knee bends (V4 and v5) and stomping and jumping around.
Eventually the whole bird was inside the Gulls crop and throat but the feet wouldn't fit (V6).
The gull then sat for about half an hour resting, apparently unconcerned, with the moorhens feet sticking out of it's mouth and one foot up.
He then tried some more maneuvers and the feet finally disappeared (V7 and V8)).
I don't think any of the shots are particularly great but the experience was instructive and amusing - and when I got home I checked on the Gull because of his very bright yellow legs and very large red bill spot. Apparently there is a species called a Yellow legged Gull, which occurs in the South of the country in summer, that fits these criteria - I would love to hear from any ornithological experts.
Hope you enjoy the pictures. A
Tags: Wildlife and nature
Gull Herring Gull Yellow Legged gull Ham Wall Somerset levels Swallowing
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