[Tweeters] Slaty-backed Gull

Charlie Wright c.wright7 at comcast.net
Mon Feb 13 22:13:52 PST 2006

Greetings All
I worked through the gulls between Cedar River estuary and Gene Coulon Park
this afternoon starting at 3:30, along with Fred Boesche. I puzzled over
some cooperative gulls at the Cedar River for about an hour. There were two
Herring Gulls showing a few intriguing Vega-like characters (an adult and a
first winter).

At 4:45 we decided it was time to check out the log boom side, as the gulls
gradually streamed in. I started frantically scanning back and forth from
the corner of the dock. After 45 minutes I was feeling a bit stressed as
there wasn't much light left, and the bird had not arrived. As a flock of
100 gulls came in to the end of the logs at 5:35, I realized this was the
last chance to get on the bird in suitable light for a positive ID. The
birds were so densely packed it was tough to see them from that angle. But,
luck was on my side and I picked out about 3 inches of blackish mantle
between all the Glaucous-wingeds, which soon revealed itself to be the
Slaty-backed Gull. We sprinted to the end of the road and got a final,
closer look at it before the light became unusable. The bird was everything
I could hope for in a Slaty-backed Gull, very nice!

Charlie Wright
Bonney Lake, Washington

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