Monday, November 25, 2013

In search of THE gull

Two days ago, a Bonaparte's Gull was found in Costa del Este (Panama City).  Some birders were lucky enough to attend the alert and managed to watch the little gull standing in the exposed mudflats at the mouth of the Matias Hernandez river.  I was in Cerro Azul and was not able to reach the site in time, so I went yesterday to Costa del Este hoping to find the vagrant (only a handful of records for Panama).
The view of Panama City from Costa del Este is overwhelming.  By the time I arrived, some birders were leaving the place (including the same pals that accompanied me the previous day in Cerro Azul)... so I joined Rosabel Miro (who first found the gull) and George Angehr along the coast in order to approach a group of waders and gulls resting in the distance.  In spite of our search, we didn't localize the Bonaparte's Gull.  However, Rosabel found a Lesser Black-backed Gull among the abundant Laughings (digiscoped with Gloriela's point-and-shoot and Rosabel's scope).
The Lesser Black-backed Gull is a rare winter visitor to our coasts... always in low numbers (usually one), so we were happy anyway.  However, keep an eye for the Bonaparte's Gull, who knows where it will show up!

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