Friday 14 March 2014

The Peregrinations of M.CAV

I recently spotted a Lesser black-backed Gull at Shawell A5 Lagoons in Leicestershire. It sported a green colour ring with the code M.ACV. This gull has been fitted with a data recorder, which uses GPS technology to record its movements. The data recorder has small solar panels to charge its batteries. The data is downloaded when the gull is within 5km of the base station in the Netherlands. In order to see the map showing its recent visit to Shawell I will have to wait until it goes back to the colony where it breeds.

Kees Camphuysen has kindly provided me with the google map, which allows you to look at its winter movements on a daily basis. During the winter of 2011/12 it visited Cotesbach Landfill site and presumably Shawell A5 Lagoons, but in 2012/13 it only got close, but appeared to stay on the Warwickshire side of the A5. With this mapping you can see where it rested on a factory roof in Daventry and that it visited a field near Huncote and also Cadeby. It also stopped off in Leicester. 

This Gull has also been seen by Steve Lister at Albion landfill site near Albert Village Lake, Leicestershire. 

The first map reveals all of its travels in winter 2011/12:

The next map shows both Shawell A5 lagoons and the nearby landfill site and also Draycote Water where it obviously roosted on many occasions (Draycote Water is down towards the bottom left hand corner):

The final map shows its visits to Cotesbach landfill site:

In summer they can record its whereabouts every 3 seconds if need be and that reveals some really interesting stuff. Amazingly it nips over to England quite frequently and it has been clocked flying back across the North Sea at speeds of up to 75 Kph. 



  1. Looks like it went to Lawford Heath tip quite a bit too Carl. Good stuff.


  2. Amazing!!!! Do you know what something like this would cost?

  3. I'm not sure but I'll try and find out for you.