Fulmar (Northern Fulmar) Fulmaris glacialis

Fulmars are a common bird around the coasts of the UK although their breeding population is small in south-east England. A few pairs breed on the cliffs in Norfolk and they are present around their ledges for almost all of the year (they are usually absent for just a few weeks in the autumn). Much larger numbers pass by at sea in suitable conditions but inland records are extremely rare.

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Fulmars, MV Sapphire pelagic trip (Scilly, UK), 7th August 2010

 

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Fulmars, MV Sapphire pelagic trip (Scilly, UK), 8th August 2010

 

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Fulmar, Sheringham (Norfolk, UK), 30th August 2008

Fulmar, Butt of Lewis (Outer Hebrides, UK), 15th May 2004

 

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Fulmars, MV Sapphire pelagic trip (Scilly, UK), 10th August 2012

 

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Fulmars, MV Sapphire pelagic trip (Scilly, UK), 11th August 2012

 

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Fulmar, Sheringham (Norfolk, UK), 11th May 2009

 

Fulmars, MV Sapphire pelagic trip (Scilly, UK), 10th August 2012

 

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Fulmar, Sheringham (Norfolk, UK),
7th April 2001

 

There are two colour phases of Fulmars - the ones with white heads and bodies as shown above and 'Blue Fulmars' with bluey-grey head and underparts. Intermediate birds also occur and the darkest ones are sometimes called 'Double Blue'. They're not a separate species or even subspecies, and blue birds may occur in any population, but they're much commoner in the more northerly breeding populations. Blue Fulmars are scarcely seen in Norfolk but there have been a few Fulmar movements in winter and early spring when several have been seen in one day. In February/March 2004 there was a wreck of Fulmars with large numbers dying and washed up along the beaches. Among these were a high proportion of Blue Fulmars including this one:

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dead 'Blue' Fulmar, Sheringham (Norfolk, UK), 27th March 2004