[Tweeters] Skagit Glaucous Gull (not an April Fools)

Gary Bletsch garybletsch at yahoo.com
Sat Apr 1 19:59:57 PDT 2017


Dear Tweeters,
This evening (Saturday the first of April), there was a big flock of gulls just east of Chuckanut Drive, and just south of Field Road, on the eastern edge of Samish Flats, one might say. The flock was also visible from Ershig Road, which has much less traffic. A farmer was putting some manure on the field, which was presumably why the flock was present. When I was watching the flock, they were just loafing, probably getting ready to fly off for the night. The farmer walked right up to the flock at one point, but they flew only a few yards before settling again.
Of close to 150 gulls, most were Glaucous-winged or "Olympic" Gulls, with quite a few California Gulls, plus a scattering of Mew Gulls. There were also two Ring-billed Gulls, and at least one adult Western Gull. Star of the show was an immature GLAUCOUS GULL. It was big, pale, and pink-legged, with a bicolored bill. 
Chuckanut Drive is a beastly poor road for birding, with hardly a pullout anywhere and lots of hurried hot-shots in black Audis and red Ram-chargers. Fortuitously, there was a wide shoulder perfectly positioned for viewing this flock.
I think this was only my second-ever April record of this species in Skagit County.
No, this is not an April Fool's prank.
Yours truly,
Gary Bletsch
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