Lesser Black Back Gull

lesser balck backed gull

The Lesser Black Backed Gull (Larus fuscus) Is a large bird found in many locations predominately on the Atlantic coasts.
These gulls however were at Llanishen Reservoir, a Victorian reservoir in the north of Cardiff. It is listed as a site of nature conservation interest (SNCI) as well as an (SSSI) Site of Special Scientific interest. It is a site of great controversy with many planing applications being put forward by Western Power Distribution and the sites future remains very uncertain. The reservoir has recently been drained and is unfilled although the streams remain. ( More information on the issue can be found at R.A.G
The Lesser Black Backed Gull can be confused with the Greater Black Backed Gull but I can be confident that these are the Lesser Black Back as they have the telltail yellow legs and not the pinkish ones found on their larger relatives.

I liked this image as again the gull is a common bird found in suburban areas close to a water source such as a Reservoir and in this case also a couple of miles from Roath Park Lake another large area of water in the area. I feel that the image shows their quite characteristic behaviour to squabble over food and their quite aggressive posturing within there group. Also, you can see the differing ages of the birds with some still displaying some black brown juvenile feathers which they lose when they reach maturity at about four years old.

The image was again taken with a 50D and Sigma 70-200 2.8 at f8. ISO 400 but this time at a focal length of 126mm in order to get the group of birds into one shot. In this case the use of f8 allowed me a large depth of field to keep all the subject birds in sharp focus with the focus only dropping off slightly into the background. The medium ISO on a bright day also allowed me to freeze the action an effect I do like in photography but one that has less value in moving images were a high shutter can in fact lead to an unrealistic looking movement when out brain filters out motion blur in the moving image.
I feel the image captures a certain behaviour commonly associated if not always fairly with gull species.

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Posted on July 17, 2011, in Wildlife. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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