Gull pictures (long)

Russell Rogers rrogers122 at attbi.com
Sun Jan 13 19:33:00 PST 2002


Hi Ruth and tweeters,

There is at least one other Thurston County Bohemian Waxwing;

1/12/1998 in Olympia by Anne Potter

Russell


Ruth Sullivan wrote:

> Hello Kelly and Chris,
> First thank you Kelly to post the photo of the Bohamian Waxwing you found
> on Christmas Eve on Mud Bay,i believe this bird is a first for the
> County.Seeing the photo of you Gull, i must agree with Chris,that this bird
> is a Herring Gull,it is verry typical heavy body with a pale yellow eye and
> a large bill.Where yoy found this bird we usual seeig three Herrig Gulls
> there when we birding there.
> 
> 
> Ruth Sullivan Tacoma
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: Chris Hill <chill at kingfish.coastal.edu>
> To: Kelly Mcallister <mcallkrm at dfw.wa.gov>
> Cc: <tweeters at u.washington.edu>
> Sent: Sunday, January 13, 2002 1:48 PM
> Subject: Gull pictures (long)
> 
> 
> 
>>>The other two photos were taken during my brief attempt at sorting out
>>>
> adult gull identification
> 
>>>at Perry Creek mouth, Mud Bay, Thurston County, Washington. I will
>>>
> probably work on
> 
>>>creating hyperlinks for these photos so that each one can be viewed at a
>>>
> larger size on the
> 
>>>screen. As it is, I don't think the gull's pale eyes can be seen. I am
>>>
> calling it a Herring
> 
>>>Gull but I am open to correction, if the photos are good enough to allow
>>>
> independent evaluation.
> 
>>>I think the bill is too large and heavy for it to be a pale-eyed
>>>
> Thayer's Gull.
> 
>>>Hope to hear from anybody who cares to take a look.
>>>
>>Kelly,
>>
>>to me, the flat head and long bill sure look like Herring Gull.  More than
>>that, the wingtip pattern looks much more like Herring than Thayers. If
>>you look at that black-and-white area that corresponds to the tips of the
>>primaries on the folded wing, the impression I get on your bird is of big
>>black feathers with small white tips.  On all the Thayers I saw in Puget
>>Sound, that area looked like a row of a checkerboard - black and white
>>"squares," equal in width.  Although Thayers vary regionally, I've
>>found that pattern a distinctive "checkpoint" when looking at possible
>>Thayers in WA.  In adults only, of course, but this bird looks like a full
>>adult.
>>
>>Of course, the white would tend to decrease over time through wear, but
>>(1) this bird has *really* small spots, and (2) I'd only worry about
>>dramatic wear if this picture were taken in May or June.  Gulls are in
>>pretty fresh plumage through the winter.
>>
>>I used to have such a hard time finding Herring Gulls in Puget Sound.  I
>>swear, I think Herring is more *overreported* (on CBCs especially) than
>>any other gull species.  But if you reported this as a Herring, I would
>>believe it no problem, even if you hadn't seen pale eyes.
>>
>>Other than the light eye, I'd be more worried about this bird being a
>>GWG-WG hybrid than a Thayers. However, most hybrids I see that are that
>>dark in the wingtip are very white on the head in winter (Western
>>Gull-like).  I have a hard time judging mantle color on a sunlit
>>photograph, so I probably shouldn't even try.  Your bird's back appears
>>pretty dark for a Herring, more like a GWG-HG hybrid, but that could just
>>be the lighting.  I'd expect a hybrid's bill to be more bulbous, less
>>long, but perhaps I'm overanalyzing that.  I can't see if the wingtips are
>>truly black (like Herring) or dark gray (like most hybrids).
>>
>>Anyway, I'm no expert, but in my opinon, it's no Thayers, and has several
>>features that point towards Herring rather than a mongrel.
>>
>>I'm off to the local dump tomorrow to sort through a few thousand gulls
>>(mostly ring-billed and herring) for other goodies, so this is a good
>>mental warmup.
>>
>>I'd be interested to hear what others think.
>>
>>Nice photos of the Waxwing, too, by the way.
>>
>>Chris Hill
>>Conway, SC (formerly, Everett, WA)
>>chill at coastal.edu
>>
>>
> 
> 
> 


-- 
----------------------------------------------------------------
Russell Rogers
6637 Glenwood Drive SW
Olympia WA 98512
(360) 709-9870
mailto:rrogers122 at attbi.com
----------------------------------------------------------------
Russell Rogers
Fish and Wildlife Biologist
Point Whitney Shellfish Laboratory
Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife
1000 Point Whitney Road
Brinnon WA 98320
(360) 586-1498  ex 221
mailto:rogerrer at dfw.wa.gov
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