IJmuiden Lesser Black-backed Gull GPS-project update: return of more adults

Since the arrival of the first 5 Lesser Black-backed Gulls fitted with a GPS logger, 2 more adults have made it back from their wintering grounds to the gull colony at IJmuiden Forteiland, the Netherlands.

One has spent its winter in Algeria while the other went to Portugal. Both got there via the United Kingdom.

  • YAUT/5565 – Portugal
  • YBKW/5861 – Algeria

(Click the image for a larger view.)


YBKW/55861 is the second recovery in Algeria for our project, with YCVN being the first one. They did not stay in the same area though: YBKW stayed at the east of Algiers while YCVN stayed at the west of Algiers.

YAUT/5565 took a popular route to the wintering grounds in southern Europe: via the United Kingdom. Interestingly, it took the same route to and from Portugal.

We received one sighting from YAUT from the UK during its migration: Carl Baggot observed it on his gull patch in August 2019 at the Shawell Lagoons, Leicestershire.

This is how the tracks look at the time of the sighting (photo of YAUT courtesy of Carl Baggot, visit his blog Bag a Wild One):


Tracks in motion

This beautiful animated time line shows how and when all 7 gulls  returned to the colony. Many thanks to Roos Kentie (NIOZ) for creating this and allowing me to share it!

YASV/5369 on a 3-day trip

On April 13, YASV/5369 made a trip inland to Den Bosch via The Hague and Rotterdam. After spending the night in Den Bosch it returned to the colony via Utrecht, Hoofddorp and the North Sea. It arrived in there on April 15th. (Click for a larger view.)


The young ones

The Lesser Black-backed Gulls which were fitted with a GPS logger last year as a juvenile are all still in their wintering locations (see the update from March).

About the project

(Source: http://www.uva-bits.nl/project/daily-movements-of-gulls-from-forteiland-ijmuiden/)

The tracking study is part of an ongoing collaboration between the University of Amsterdam UvA (Dr. Judy Shamoun-Baranes) and the Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research NIOZ (Dr. Kees Camphuysen).

The study is being conducted within the project “Interactions between birds and offshore wind farms: drivers, consequences and tools for mitigation” funded by NWO Applied and Engineering Sciences Open Technology Programme, Rijkswaterstaat and Gemini windpark.

The tracking study will provide complementary information on the movement patterns of gulls breeding along the North Sea coast, with similar objectives to the studies conducted on Texel and Schiermonnikoog.

The main aim is to identify intrinsic and external drivers of movement from fine scale flight behaviour to seasonal migrations. While adult gulls from other colonies have been tracked since 2008, little is still known about the daily movements and flight behaviour of juveniles and how this differs from adults.

This study will contribute to our knowledge on how juvenile birds develop their foraging and migration strategies and how their flight behaviour differs from adults.


If you come across any of our gulls from the IJmuiden Forteiland project, please let us know. Feel free to include me on the e-mail: gulls at vankleinwee.com.

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