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Ringed gulls Bay of Biscay

This bird-banding program aims at studying distribution range and the gull’s population on the French Atlantic shores. The study focus on three seagull species: the European Herring gull (Larus argentatus), Lesser black-backed gull (Larus fuscus) and Great black-backed gull (Larus marinus) . These species show different conservation concern. Since few decades, The Great black-backed gull’s nesting population is increasing while the Lesser black-backed gull and Herring gull are decreasing. For the case of the Herring gull, this specie is now “Vulnerable” on the Bretagne Red List of threatened bird.

Moreover, these seagulls show changes in their spatial range and the ecological range. In fact, the European Herring gull was the first to colonize the urban environment but currently, Lesser and Great black-backed gulls are also nesting in urban areas. They left their natural environment, cliffs and little islands, to nest in cities. We need to know better gull’s demography to understand changes that occur now. Bird-banding and reporting of ringed gulls will allow us to determine the survival rate of gulls’ breeding population for these species on French Atlantic shore. Besides, these information will describes movements between birth sites, breeding sites, migration routes, wintering area and distribution range. Results of this study should give us essential information for developing conservation programs, as improving breeding conditions in their natural environment and develop mitigation into urban environment for acceptable cohabitation, which is often problematic.

Additionally, several anthropic activities will change gulls’ environment in the north of Biscay industrial offshore wind farms projects and the “zero–waste” for professional fishing. These projects will probably cause accidental deaths or change the feeding resources’ availability. Monitoring the banded gulls will allow us to evaluate the impact of these projects on their population.

This website have been created to allow observers to transmit their sightings and to give them access at each ringed gull’s life history. You can consult life stories of birds and you have a map to see others recorded bird observations.

Last 10 sightings 
 NB: The ring code is one number separated from three letters by “:” Ex: 1: AAA 
VAction DateSpeciesColored ringDepartmentMunicipalityLocalityObservers  
C 28/05/2020European herring gull2:DXV56QUIBERONEn Toul BihanMarine Leicher
C 27/05/2020European herring gullR:E8K17SAINT-PIERRE-D'OLÉRONAvenue de la LibérationROUET FLAVIE
C 26/05/2020European herring gull3:BKL85NOIRMOUTIER-EN-L'ÎLEAllée du TambourinGourdel Laurence
C 25/05/2020Lesser black-backed gull3:HAU50EJEA DE LOS CABALLEROSLuis Gracia Garcés
R 23/05/2020European herring gullR:S4E17ESNANDESCoup de VagueLOZAC'HMEUR Fanny
C 22/05/2020Great black-backed gull4:DEY56LORIENTRue du Commandant l'HerminierBriel Mélissa
C 22/05/2020European herring gull3:CAJ14VALAMBRAYLe Mont TornuLECLERC François
C 22/05/2020European herring gull2:BKN56LORIENTK3Yves LE BAIL
C 22/05/2020Yellow-legged gullR:K3U85FAUTE-SUR-MER (LA)Terrains du C.E.L.SALMON Franck
C 21/05/2020Great black-backed gull4:CDX17SAINT-DENIS-D'OLÉRONPortLALUQUE Olivier
Top 5 of seagulls which are
furthest from their
bird-banding site
Top 5 of
oldest seagulls since
SpeciesColored ringDistance  
Lesser black-backed gullR:U1P3229.929 km
Lesser black-backed gullR:R0V3144.679 km
Lesser black-backed gullR:T2H2829.128 km
Lesser black-backed gullR:V9A2824.802 km
Lesser black-backed gullR:X5P2824.702 km
SpeciesColored ringLongevity  
Yellow-legged gullR:K5S5800 jours
Yellow-legged gullR:A2A3599 jours
European herring gullR:A0S3574 jours
Great black-backed gullR:A9C3564 jours
Lesser black-backed gullR:C0H3557 jours

  Written by © Bretagne Vivante / Arnaud LH - contact website - contact Program - Photo credits : Y. Le Bail, M. Estevens, P. Salaun, J. Marques, F. Latraube, JP. Tilly