Two birdwatchers on holiday to the area here found an unusual solitary gull on Clashnessie Beach on 17th May. They correctly identified it as a Franklin’s Gull. Normally breeding in North America this is a rare vagrant to Europe and a first for Assynt if not Sutherland.
Similiar to a small version of a black -headed Gull, it has darker wings and back. It is a fist summer bird which means the normally red bill and legs are more black than red and the black hood is not complete. The thick white crescents above and below its eye are very distinctive.
The photograph below was taken by David Haines on 18th May. There are unconfirmed reports that the bird may have been around since the 15th May.