Not that long ago, Black-headed Gull was a fairly rare breeder in VC55 with sporadic short-term colonies up until the 90s. Most colonies since then have been at Rutland Water, or over to the north and north-west of Leicestershire. Because as I rarely go to to such places in the summer/autumn, juv Black-headed Gulls are not something I see with any regularity. Recently though there seems to have been a bit of an increase and I think they're breeding not far from WCPN. Either way, nice to see this juv - though in this plumage it absolutely does not fit the common name, and at all ages they do not fit the scientific name.
It used to be Larus, like any good gull should be, which appears to have been used in Latin (and in the Greek laros) for any gull or other large seabird. For Black-headed and several other species, that got changed to Chroicocephalus - derived from Greek for something like 'coloured and head'. But the taxon is still ridibundus, which is derived from the Latin for 'laughing'. For the common and taxonomic names to be coherent, he taxon should probably be melanocephalus which is derived from Greek for 'black headed'. But that belongs to Mediterranean Gull, which incidentally used to be Larus but is now Ichthyaetus, which is derived from Greek for 'fish eagle'. Meanwhile, Laughing Gull is Leucocephaeus atricilla (though it also used to be Larus). Leucocepheus is derived from Greek for 'white and dusky'. The taxon, atricilla, is apparently down to Linneaus fucking up transcribing his notes - atricilla roughly translates from Latin to 'black-tailed' (Laughing Gull has a white tail). It should have been atricapilla - Latin for 'black-haired'.
All in all this highlights that the 'universality' of scientific names is all well and good, except when they change, as they often do, which makes that 'universality' absolute bollocks. And it also highlights that vernacular names are all well and good, but are usually meaningless and don't directly reflect the scientific name, making them also bollocks. But at least they're more stable even if incorrect.
So to be clear, the three gulls below are no longer Larus = gull ....
Black-headed Gull = Chroicocephalus ridibundus = Laughing Coloured-headed
Mediterranean Gull = Ichthyaetus melanocephalus = Black-headed Fish-eagle
Laughing Gull = Leucocepheus atricilla = Black-tailed White Dusky
I'm not sure which I loathe more: taxonomists or gulls ....