Belgian Black-headed Gull colourringproject
Update Gull-ringing season 2018 (30/08/2018)
In 2018, our 10th breeding season, we colourringed 216 BHGulls: around the port of Antwerp (109), Molsbroek Lokeren (73), Gent (3), and Loupoigne (31).
This brings our total number colourringed BHG on 2.925 (>95% colour-ringed as chick).
Update Gull-ringing season 2017 (21/09/2017)
In 2017 we colourringed 184 BHGulls: around the port of Antwerp (63), Marais d'Harchies (4), Molsbroek Lokeren (14), Gent (1), Zoutleeuw-Vinne (41), Veurne (18) and Loupoigne (43).
This brings our total number colourringed BHG on 2.709 (>95% colour-ringed as chick).
New coulourring codes (25/04/2017)
From this breedingseason on, we use new colourring codes:
a four alpha- numeric code with First letter 'E' + Letter + number + number
=> EA00 - EZ99
Hybrid EEVY for 7th year in a row back in Molsbroek! (27/03/2017)
EEVY is back in the colony and she still (since 2015) is paired with the collourringde male BHGULL EJHY. We colourringed this male as a chick in Molsbroek in june 2012.
Update Gull-ringing season 2016 (30/08/2016)
In 2016 we colourringed 329 BHGulls, again we welcomed new ringing sites: a breeding colony at Loupoigne- Décanteurs de la Sucrerie (province of Walloon Brabant) and at Hechtel-Zwart water (Province of Limbourg).
Marais d'Harchies (113), Molsbroek Lokeren (56), around the port of Antwerp (77), Gent (31), Hechtel-Zwart water (15), Veurne (15) and Loupoigne (22). This brings our total number colourringed BHG on 2.518 (>96% colour-ringed as chick).
Hybrid EEVY for sixth year in a row back in Molsbroek! (20/03/2016)
Gulls arrived a few weeks ago in the breeding colonies. Now for the sixth year in a row the adult female hybrid Black-headed x Mediterranean gull EEVY arrived back in Molsbroek. The last weekends we could read already 12 rings in Molsbroek.
Update Gull-ringing season 2015 (13/08/2015)
In 2015 we colourringed 487 BHGulls, by far our best year, we also welcomed a new ringing site: a breeding colony at Veurne (7km away of the Belgian coast):
Marais d'Harchies (167), Molsbroek Lokeren (66), Zoutleeuw-Vinne (23), around the port of Antwerp (196), Gent (4) and in Veurne (31). This brings our total number colourringed BHG on 2.186 (97% colour-ringed as chick).
Hybrid EEVY back, 12 rings read in Molsbroek (21/03/2015)
This weekend the adult female hybrid Black-headed x Mediterranean gull EEVY arrived back in Molsbroek. This gull is around for the fifth breedingseason in a row. The last days we could read 12 rings in Molsbroek.
Gulls arrived at Molsbroek nature reserve (01-03-2015)
At february 24th first gulls arrived at Molsbroek nature reserve (Lokeren). EKXM and EHNS are already present.
Update gull seaon 2014
In 2014 we colourringed 231 BHG's: Marais d'Harchies (96), Molsbroek Lokeren (93), Zoutleeuw-Vinne (23), around the port of Antwerp (12) and Gent (7). This brings our total number colourringed BHG on 1697.
We already received 1.015 sightings of 379 different BHG's. This means that >25% of all the gulls we colourringed (1.461) are being sighted, a pretty satisfactory number as we colourring meanly chiks (96%).
Arrival first gulls in breeding colonies (2014)
A few days earlier as usual (February 17th) the first BHG's arrived in the colony of Lokeren-Molsbroek. EAPT, EKXM and EEVY (hybrid) are yet present.
Update end gull-season 2013
In 2013 we colourringed 351 BHGulls: Lokeren-Molsbroek (122), Around the port of Antwerp (117), Hensies-Marais d'Harchies (93), Zoutleeuw-Het Vinne (12) and Ghent-Drongen (7). This brings our total on 1461 cr-BHG's!
Belgian BHGull-Kindergarten at Montreuil-Sur-Loir (FR)
The last days (mid April), Fabrice Rayer observed 9 of our colourringed BHG's, gathering at Montreuil-Sur-Loir (France, Maine-et-Loire): eight 2cy and one 4CY: seems like a Belgian BHG-Kindergarten! These 9 gulls are born in the colonies of Molsbroek (5), Port of Antwerp (3) and Lommel (1). Nice!!!
Arrival first gulls in breeding colonies (2013)
Traditionally, the last week of February means the arrival of the first adult BHGulls in the breeding colonies. For the third year in a row the female hybrid Black-headed x Mediterranean Gull (EEVY) returned to Molsbroek (first seen back on March 16 2013).
Update end gull-season 2012
In 2012 we colourringed 435 BHGulls: Lokeren-Molsbroek (178), Around the Port of Antwerp (191), Hensies-Marais d'Harchies (65) and Ghent-Drongen (1). This brings our total on 1109 cr-BHG's!
Another hybrid Black-headed x Mediterranean Gull colourringed
On june 26 2012 around the port of Antwerp (Kieldrecht, East-Flanders) another hybrid Black-headed x Mediterranean Gull (chick) is colourringed (EHSY).
First foreign sightings of juveniles
Foreign sightings of CR- juveniles came from France and Spain, just a month after being colourringed as chick!
Gull-ringing season 2012 started
The (colour)ringing of BHG-chicks started again. This year our project extended with another colony: Hensies- Marais d'Harchies (Hainaut province-Wallonia).
Hybrid back but not breeding?
The adult female hybrid Black-headed x Mediterranean Gull (EEVY) returned to Molsbroek (first seen on March 18 2012). On April 29th 2012 an attempt to locate her possible nest was unsuccesful. EEVY is not seen copulating and she doesn't show any 'breeding behaviour' this year...
Exchange between colonies
Exchange between colonies takes place: EAAN (3cy, born in Lommel) and EESN (4cy, born in Molsbroek) are beeing sighted now around the port of Antwerp. Nice!!!
Return of colourringed chicks as adult
Currently EEWW (4cy), EETK (3cy), EHHA (3cy), EAAN (3cy), EAYV (3cy) and EESN (4cy) are present in the breeding colonies of Molsbroek and the port of Antwerp. This means that the first return of our colourringed chicks to the breeding colonies is a fact.
Update end Gull-season 2011
Breeding season 2011 ended and we managed to colourring 277 BHGulls this year: around the port of Antwerp (165), Lokeren-Molsbroek (82), Zoutleeuw-Vinne (29) and Ghent-Drongen (1). As usual a vast majority of juveniles (268) and only a few adults (9) were colourringed. Highlight was the catch of the adult female hybrid (see below).
Hybrid colourringed! (from left to right: Lyndon Kearsley, Geert De Smet, Tim Audenaert, Eric Van Lembergen)
As the first juveniles are leaving the nests, the colourring-season began in Lokeren-Molsbroek, Antwerp-Total, Beveren-Doelpolder, Zoutleeuw-Vinne and Lommel.
Hybrid Black-headed x Mediterranean Gull colourringed!
In the breeding colony of Molsbroek nature reserve (Lokeren) a female hybrid Black-headed x Mediterranean Gull is paired with a male Black-headed Gull. She laid a clutch of 3 eggs. On april 25th we caught, measured, weighted, photographed and (colour)ringed her (EEVY) Two days earlier we already measured the eggs.
2011 breeding season begins
First BHGulls are arriving in the breeding colonies. In Molsbroek Nature reserve (Lokeren) EEWM and EEEY, both colour-ringed as adult in 2009, are already present on february 17th.
2011 january 28
The 100th sighting (55 different birds) of our colourringed BHGulls is a fact!
Nine of our BHGUlls are wintering around Madrid: six 'first winter' birds (EAYJ, EAXH, EEKR, EHEE, EHNJ,EEXS) and three adults (EEPL, EAEY, EEEV). Seven of them stay at a landfill in Colmenar Viejo, two in Pinto. The gulls are colourringed in the breeding colonies of Molsbroek-Lokeren (4), Lommel-Nyrstar (1), Ghent (1) and the port of Antwerp (3).
So far EHAT (1st winter) is our most "long distance BHG", ringed as chick near the port of Antwerp and sighted in southern Spain (near Malaga) >1.770km.
Four BHGulls (EHNE, EHNP, EHNR, EHNL) are wintering in Belgium, all in the city of Ghent, all local birds. Is Ghent a special Belgian place to winter or has it more determined gullwatchers?
EEWT, (colour)ringed in 2009 as adult in the breeding colony of Molsbroek, reported back in the colony in breeding season 2010, is sighted on august 10th at the Portuguese coast in Villa Nova de Gaia (Douro esturay south of Porto).
2010 breeding season
The BHGull colour-ring project of Molsbroek nature reserve extended to other Belgian colonies. During breeding season 2010, 342 BHGulls are colourringed in Lokeren-Molsbroek (115 juveniles & 1 adult), Lommel-Nyrstar (101 juveniles, 25 adults), Beveren-Left bank of the river Scheldt (59 juveniles), Antwerp-Right bank of the river Scheldt (31 juveniles) and around Ghent (9 juveniles & 1 adult).
In the breeding colony at Molsbroek nature reserve (Lokeren), 55 BHGulls (38 juveniles & 17 adults) were colour-ringed in 2009. Seven of these gulls were sighted in the first year (3 juveniles & 4 adults). Examples of juvenile dispersion in northeastern direction (EESF was read in august in Stralsund, Mecklenburg- Vorpommern, >700 km) and wintering at the French Mediterranean coast (1CY EEPM is sighted in december in Palavas-les-Flots, Languedoc-Roussillion, >850 km) are reported. Breeding adults arrived in the colony at Molsbroek nature reserve in march 2010, with the presence of at least 2 colour-ringed gulls (EEWK & EEWT).