Tag Archives: HERG

Welcom Back Dave

L52 Welcomes Dave Adrien Back to Hampton Beach from Chasing Great Grey Owls in Montreal

L52 Welcomes Dave Adrien Back to Hampton Beach from Photographing Great Grey Owls in Montreal

Dave Adrien continues to supply sightings of Appledore Gulls as well as other banded gulls and banded shorebirds observed at sites along the New England coast.  His major contribution to research includes thousands of reports of hundreds of different banded birds.  Dave has a treasure trove of photographs of ‘known age’ Herring Gulls and Great Black-backed Gulls to accompany his myriad list of bands seen.

L52 was banded while a chick at a nest on Appledore Island July 13 2011.  DNA indicates L52 is a male.  More than 80 sighting reports are on record for L52 showing providing considerable information about his movements.  L52 favors the Hampton Beach area of New Hampshire.


Dave Adrien Spots V72 plus an ‘Outsider’

ARU from New Brunswick
ARU (Great Black-backed Gull) from New Brunswick and V72 (Herring Gull) from Appledore

V72 was banded as a chick on Appledore Island July 19, 2012

Dave Adrien continues his determined quest for banded gulls and shorebirds.  Here is the latest from Dave regarding V72 and an unusual AGU.

On Tuesday, January 3, 2017 3:08 PM, Dave Adrien wrote regarding AGU:

Location – today @ noon

Salisbury Beach State Park – Lot 2

Salisbury MA.

Mixed gulls roosting in the parking lot – 150 plus birds

I’m searching thru gulls and here is a green band – Appledore HERG V72. … I know him. Here’s another green band;  ARU.  All alpha code –that’s unique – this isn’t a Appledore bird. Wait (the light bulb hasn’t gone off yet)  – this isn’t a HERG!

Since July 2014 I have recorded over 2500 sightings of banded gulls and this is Gull # 670.  My first non-Appledore banded GBBG

Dave Adrien


From: [New Brunswick] Ron Ronconi
Sent: Wednesday, January 04, 2017 8:59 AM
To: Dave Adrien
Subject: Re: banded gull [AGU]

Hi Dave,

Yes indeed, that [ARU] is one of mine.  My banding repertoire includes white on green for GBBG and white on pink for HERG.  Amazing that you got banded [Appledore, V72] HERG and GBBG in the same photo.  Also surprising that you got one of these GBBG.  We banded only 4 GBBG chicks on Kent Island, New Brunswick, this summer and this is one of them.  …

Posing for a Portrait – E52

E52 at Hampton Beach NH 17 Aug 2016 - Photo by Rose Donovanthies

E52 at Hampton Beach NH 17 Aug 2016 – Photo by Rose Donovanthies

E52 was banded on Appledore Island in Maine as a chick at nest T26 on July 13, 2006.  Of the more than 50 reports  received since then on E52 most come from Appledore Island Maine where E52 eventually returned to nest and raise chicks or from the nearby mainland.

Rose Donovanthies captured this striking photo of E52 posing  at Hampton Beach NH.

P90 Slowly Comes Home

In a sort of continuation of last week’s blog, today we will address the case of P90, a Herring Gull banded as a chick in 2009 at a nest site described as “Kiggins under the stairwell.”  (Kiggins being the Appledore dining commons.) P90 was seen later that year off island, in Rye New Hampshire, and then back at Kiggins for 2010, 2012, and 2013.

It was in 2014 that P90 was first attached to a nest of their own making, by the western edge of the lower deck at Kiggins. (Interesting to note that P90 was frequently seen on-island at Kiggins one day, then re-sighted off-island the next.) For 2014, P90 was paired up with mate U05, a Herring gull banded as an adult in 2014. Together, the pair fledged all three of their chicks! Pretty good run.

Apparently, P90 was satisfied with neither their location nor their mate, as the next year found them with 38E on a nest towards the opposite side of the deck – a fair bit closer to the 2009 natal site. Unfortunately, P90 and 38E had a failed nest for 2015. I feel it only fair to note that U05’s nest also failed for the 2015 season. This year, P90 has been attached to a nest, again with 38E. However, their nesting site is now directly under the stairwell of Kiggins. Finally, a return home!

The Gull Population Biology Interns wish the pair all the success in the world – sentiments that were difficult to properly convey to the pair while banding their three chicks. Strange.


P90’s nest sites. Estimated natal nest site is marked with an x.

These chicks are between 34 and 35 days old today, and very near fledging. Congrats, P90, and welcome home!


P90’s three chicks, inspecting the grease trap under Kiggins Commons.






The banding team is on Appledore Island this week (July 11 to 17) banding Great Black-backed and Herring Gull juveniles about to fly.



First Flight

As of Thursday no juveniles had yet been seen flying on Appldore .  So the team was enthralled to witness the first successful flight of a Herring Gull.  As the team watched from across the narrow cove, the youngster practiced a few lifts in place, furiously flapping to rise a few feet above the rock.  Then a pause, followed by a full honest flight for about 50 feet with a soft landing.  Returning at a run up-slope to the rock crest a short rest followed. And then, with a parent ‘cheering’, a true flight about sixty feet, a turn and a flight back to the rock.


Out and Return

This is the first observed juvenile flight of the year on the Island.  In the coming weeks the banded Herring Gulls and Great Black-backed Gulls will be dispersing to mainland New Hampshire and then throughout the east coast.  I hope you are able to see one of the banded gulls and report the band number back to us.  Each and every report is most welcome.

Banding gulls is demanding work on rugged Appledore Island in Maine.  Here’s the tough and effective team at work in the rocky terrain.  The Shoals Marine Lab buildings occupy a small portion of the Island and gulls nest along the pathways and buildings but many gulls choose to nest in the jumbled rocky shore areas.


Mary Everett Returning a Banded Gull to It’s Home Territory



Engineer Mike Rosen Successfully Trying the New Banding Pliers He Designed as Taylor Assists and Dr. Sarah Observes.

Bander-in-Charge: Dr. Sarah Courchesne (green); guest engineer: Mike Rosen, and experienced bander: Taylor Ouellette.


Below: The 2016 banding team;  Kyla, Jamie, Taylor, Eric, Dr. Sarah Courchesne, Jinette, Liam. Mary Everett, and Taylor Ouellette.  Mary and Taylor have been ‘On-Island’ involved in gull studies since May; both are experienced gull workers from the 2015 season.  Jamie and Eric have both assisted in prior banding operations on Appledore.



A Family Portrait

IMG_3696 HERG Family Group

Great Black-backed Gulls, one of the study species at Shoals Marine Lab on Appledore Island.  The present gull study began in 2004 and builds upon prior studies conducted on Appledore.