Thiruvananthapuram: The City-based bird watching team has sighted the Slender-billed Gull considered as a rare migrant bird at Vellanaathuruthu beach in Kollam.
The gull also known as Larus Genei is a rather uncommon winter visitor to the state belonging to the Seagull family, and was seen at the Vellanaathuruthu beach, during the Annual Asian Waterfowl Census conducted by the city-based nature and bird lovers' forum, Warblers and Waders.
C.Susanth,Waterfowl Census Coordinator of the Warblers and Waders told Deccan Chronicle that the Waterfowl census team visited Vellanaathuruthu beach twice to confirm the sighting of this rather uncommon Gull.
The waterfowl census team comprised Mr Susanth, G.Santhosh Kumar, S.S.Ratheesh and R.Prasath. The Warblers and Waders have been conducting the Annual Asian Waterfowl Census of Thiruvananthapuram and Kollam for the last 26 years.
The adult Slender-billed Gull has a white head. The deep red bill often looks pale blackish with a pale iris during winter. The habitat of this migrant Gull is coastal waters, lagoons, estuaries, large tidal creeks and salt pans, Mr Susanth said. The team sighted
21 individual Slender-billed Gulls in the mixed flocks which also comprised the Black-headed Gulls and Brown Headed Gulls. The flock contained 500 individual birds. Earlier, its presence had been recorded from the Kadalundi estuary, Purathur Estuary of Malappuram, Chavakkad beach, Thrissur, Ittikulam beach in Kannur and Purakkad and Thottapally of Alappuzha. The other migrant shore birds recorded at Vellanaathuruthu were Green Shank, Red Shank, Sanderlling, Kentish Plover, Lesser Sand Plover, Pallas' Gull, Heuglin's Gull, Greater Crested Tern, Lesser Crested Tern, Little Tern, Gull-billed Tern, Common Sandpiper and Whimbrel....