Sandpoint, Idaho dark-mantled gull photos

Ruth Sullivan GODWIT at
Thu Mar 21 19:38:39 PST 2002

Hello Stephen and Obolers,
I like to respond of you sighting of the Slaty-backed Gull you having there
in Idaho.
Even with a photo where you raly dont see to much detail,the first look
was::this is aSlaty-backed Gull:this by the body shape kind of heavy body
with a thick neck,strow colore staight bill wit the smudge eye,seems as he
wearing make up.I got lot's of experience this finding an adult Slaty-backed
by myself on January first 1994 here in Tacoma.We had birders comming from
many different states proable clost to 800 birders saw this bird,We had
maybe?the same bird an adult comming after that for three years same place.I
am sure that some of the birders came from Idaho.This particular bird was as
dark there can get,jet black.Some of the Slaty-backed Gulls are not so black
as the bird Patrick found in Revelstoke BC in October 1993.It took awhile to
get this bird confirmed.It also seems that this Gulls are usual found on
mouth of rivers as this birds in Oregon close to Sauvie Island on the
columbia river.
I must also agree that this Slaty-backed Gull in Sandpoint is a third year
bird in winter,because of the black tail in flight.There are som exellent
photos of the Slaty-backed Gull on the Gallery verry close and in flight
where you can see all the major fieldmaks.

Ruth Sullivan
godwit at

----- Original Message -----
From: Stephen L. Lindsay <slindsay at>
To: Inland-NW-Birders <inland-nw-birders at>; Tweeters
<tweeters at>; OBOL <obol at>
Cc: Hardy, Lisa <basalt at>; Sturts, Shirley
<s.sturts at>; <RKorpi at>
Sent: Thursday, March 21, 2002 10:04 AM
Subject: Sandpoint, Idaho dark-mantled gull photos

> I have placed 6 photographs that I took on March 17 of the dark-mantled


> being seen at City Beach, Sandpoint, Bonner Co., N Idaho at:


> .


> This gull was first reported by Lisa Hardy last week. These photos are


> great, but they do show enough detail of certain important areas (nape &


> smudging, leg color, wing tip pattern of folded and extended wings, upper


> underwing color, tail band). They do not show the orbital ring which is

> orange.


> There has been conjecture as to the identification of this gull: Western

> vs. Glaucous-winged X Western vs. Slaty-backed. Below I have included

> the comments of Ray Korpi concerning dark-mantled hybrids. We would

> appreciate a discussion of this bird's identification.


> Stephen Lindsay

> Coeur d'Alene, Idaho

> slindsay at



> ----- Original Message -----

> From: "Korpi, Ray" <RKorpi at>

> To: <slindsay at>

> Sent: Wednesday, 20 March, 2002 2:39 PM

> Subject: Dark-mantled Gull



> > Stephen,

> > The one thing that I've learned from local gull experts about Western X

> > Glaucous-winged hybrids is that there are dark birds. I have seen, on

> > occasion, very dark individuals that were for all intents and purposes

> like

> > Western Gulls except that the underside of the black wing tips was grey

> > rather than black. Skip Russell, who has done much gull work in


> > (and worked on Dunn's gull tape), states that pure Westerns are very


> in

> > Portland, and in much of his experience, birds reported as Westerns are

> > darker hybrids. So, yes, there are dark hybrids, and they do stick out

> like

> > your bird there. Someone should check the underside of the wingtips if

> > possible

> > RK

> >

> > Ray Korpi, PhD

> > Director, Hawkins Computer Lab

> > Clark College

> > Vancouver WA

> >

> >

> >



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