Westmoreland Park gulls (02/13/10)

A first-winter Ring-billed Gull.

What is this here? Size-wise, this bird seemed to be a little smaller than the Olympic gulls that it was with. Likely a 3rd winter bird. This could be a bright-eyed Kumlien’s Gull. Comments very welcome.

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3 Comments

  1. The underside of the primaries on the far wing are unmarked white. That would seem to eliminate Herring Gull and point to a pale-eyed Thayer’s Gull. It seems quite small-billed for hybrid Western x Glaucous-winged, but with just this one photo I can’t be totally sure.

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  2. A very intriguing gull. The bill is just a little too heavy for the Thayer’s/Kumlien’s complex. The wing tips, while the right shade of gray, have too much gray overall. I would think there would be more of a two-tone pattern to the primaries. A shot of the spread wings would give a clearer picture of this pattern. If I had to put a name on this bird, I would go with a runt Olympic. My best guess.

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  3. Shawneen Finnegan’s comment probably sums it up correctly: Without an underwing shot, it will be near impossible to clinch the id on this bird. It could be in the Thayer’s complex, but we just can’t safely eliminate a Glaucous-winged x Herring hybrid. Shawneen and I agree that a GW x Western hybrid is probably not a good candidate.

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