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BTO Winter Gull Survey

The Winter Gull Survey collects information about our wintering gull populations, through the coordinated effort of volunteer surveyors across the UK.

In winter, gulls flock together to roost communally on lakes, reservoirs and estuaries, in groups that can reach the thousands.

After a gap of 20 years the Winter Gull Survey (WinGS) is being relaunched and will run over the winters of 2023/24 and 2024/25 to collect updated information on the numbers and distributions of these wintering gulls in the UK, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man.

WinGS volunteers visit gull roost sites, counting five key species: Black-headed Gull, Common Gull, Lesser Black-backed Gull, Herring Gull and Great Black-backed Gull. These gulls are all of conservation concern, and their breeding populations are either Amber- or Red-listed in the UK.

Gathering more detailed information about wintering populations, and which roost sites they rely on, will help the BTO protect them and develop more effective conservation strategies.

There are a number of sites in Suffolk where volunteers are needed to help complete these counts, if you are interested in helping and to find out more information visit or contact or Mick Wright, BTO RR Suffolk 07801506942

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