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: Odd gull -- historical interest  ( 1517 )

psweet

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Odd gull -- historical interest
« : January 09, 2016, 09:27:56 AM »
I was looking through some shots of Lesser Black-backed Gulls, and found this guy. I photographed him at the Gull Fest in 2014. None of us noticed anything out of the ordinary at the time, but... He's got a very dark back, limited white on the wingtips, and a very heavy bill. There's also a fair bit of streaking on the head and neck, which doesn't fit any of the other dark-backed gulls. Any thoughts?

Mystery Gull 2-15-14 IL (2) by psweet1, on Flickr
Mystery Gull 2-15-14 IL (8) by psweet1, on Flickr
Mystery Gull 2-15-14 IL (7) by psweet1, on Flickr

Andy Stewart

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Re: Odd gull -- historical interest
« #1 : January 13, 2016, 03:35:27 PM »
call it a Great Black-Backed, they can have head streaking in winter

Walter Marcisz

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Re: Odd gull -- historical interest
« #2 : January 13, 2016, 05:15:34 PM »
The bird has shockingly yellow legs, so that doesn't fit Great Black-backed Gull. Also GBBG normally has P10 white to the tip, which does not match the photo bird.

What about the possibility of Larus fuscus intermedius? The mantle shade looks right, barring some possible exposure anomaly. I wouldn't go as far as L. f. fuscus - it doesn't quite fit, and that's a bit of a stretch anyway.

Walter Marcisz
Chicago, Cook Co.


psweet

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Re: Odd gull -- historical interest
« #3 : January 13, 2016, 05:41:34 PM »
I've just about given up on this bird -- I agree that GBBG doesn't fit, between the legs and the wing pattern. The problem I've had calling it a LBBG (aside from the darker mantle) is that the bill seems awfully thick.

On another note, I figured out one reason no-one really noticed him -- this was taken at the same time the Slaty-backed was flying around!

Andy Stewart

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Re: Odd gull -- historical interest
« #4 : January 14, 2016, 06:00:40 AM »
shades of graellsii?, ours are always darker than pictures of "pure" graellsii

Amar Ayyash

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Re: Odd gull -- historical interest
« #5 : January 15, 2016, 11:44:05 PM »
I'll echo Walter's comments. Looking at the second photo, you can see reasonable contrast between the black wingtip and the upperwing. Maybe a Dutch Intergrade (graellsii/intermedius) or even intermedius. Or, it could be the exposure in the images??

The primary pattern doesn't look unlike LBBG (mirror on p10, smaller mirror on p9). Head streaking is fine for Lesser, and the bright yellow bill with large red gonys spot is very reminiscent of Lesser Black-backed. The bill does look chunky, but not a deal breaker.

Here's a LBBG with a larger-than-average bill: http://www.gull-research.org/lbbgjanmay/j0k0.html

Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.  -B. Russell
http://anythinglarus.com

 

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