Alan Dalton post's birding diaries and original artwork from Sweden. Established in 2006, this now long running blog is now a complete overview of my birding experiences. As an artist I greatly enjoy sketching birds in the field and you will find a wide selection of that work here, from fieldwork to finished paintings. I am very passionate about my artwork and try to depict birds in their natural habitat, as I see them in the wild. My artwork is for sale and can be viewed at
As regards to my photography, since 2008 I have used a Nikon D90 DSLR camera coupled with a Sigma 150-500mm OS lens for since March 2012 for bird photography, all previous images being digiscoped. Regarding sound recording, I have been usung a Telinga Stereo Dat Mic and parabol to record birds in the field, coupled to a Marrantz 661 digital recorder, a superb piece of kit. Interest in butterflies, dragonflies and damselflies has recently seen the accquisition of a Sigma 150mm macro lens. I hope you enjoy the blog and please feel free to leave comments or contact me at

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Light Mantled Lesser Black-backed Gull?; 3rd Calender Plumage; Skeppsbron; 6th August 2014

Interestingly, it seems this bird has a retained 1st generation P10, the ouermost primary feather. this is probably the result of a retarded moult on the birds second cycle, which happens occasionally. P4-P9 are second cycle feathers, also worn and abraded, though not nearly as abraded and faded as the older outer primary. P1-P2 are growing out, thus this bird displays primaries from three seperate annual moult cycles. P3 has been dropped. Note the small white mirror at the tip of P9 and feint whit primary tip.

Note here new central tail feathers, beginings of moult on the inner primaries. The mantle and scapulars have largely been replaced and are rather light in tone. Also there are a couple of fresh greater covert's on the right wing, easily seen in this shot. The iris is pale.

Photos here of a third calender Lesser Black-backed Gull, this bird showing a very interesting moult pattern...The bird seems light in tone, prompting thoughts of intermedius/graelsii, though the moult is a little less advance than one might ecpect fpr that and could fit with Baltic Gull? I strongly suspect the bird is of light mantled form, due to the tail moult and light tones on the mantle and scapulars.

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