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Ring-billed Gull

From Opus

Photo by MI-Phil Traverse City, Michigan USA, March 2013
Photo by MI-Phil
Traverse City, Michigan USA, March 2013
Larus delawarensis

Contents

[edit] Identification

L. 49 cm (17.5")
A fairly small white-headed gull, with gray back, thick bill, very narrow white crescents on back, a few white primary tips showing when standing, and pale yellow eye.

Juveniles have contrasting white belly, pale rump with black tail band, and black primaries.

1st summerPhoto by bobsofpaHoneymoon Island State Park, Florida, USA, April 2008
1st summer
Photo by bobsofpa
Honeymoon Island State Park, Florida, USA, April 2008

[edit] Similar Species

  • Mew Gull is slightly smaller with slightly darker back, dark eye, much thinner bill (sometimes with very thin ring), broad white crescents on back, and more white primary tips. Juveniles have uniform black-brown upperparts. Juvenile to 1st summer have brownish primaries.
  • California Gull is larger with slightly darker back, dark eye, red and black marks on slightly longer bill. 2nd winter similar to 1st winter Ring-billed but back darker gray, dark eye, and blueish legs.
  • Herring Gull is much larger Adult similar but with larger bill, pink legs, more extensive streaking on neck. 3rd winter similar to 1st winter Ring-billed but much larger with pink legs, and much more streaking to neck and head.

[edit] Distribution

1st winterPhoto by Urban Wildlife DFW Urban WildlifeDallas, Texas, February 2012
1st winter
Photo by Urban Wildlife DFW Urban Wildlife
Dallas, Texas, February 2012

In breeding season found in Canada and the northern United States. Winters south to Mexico. Rare but regular vagrant to the UK with records annually. Accidental to France, Germany, The Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Hungary, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Morocco, South Africa, and Japan.

[edit] Taxonomy

This is a monotypic species[1].

[edit] Habitat

Lakes, rivers and the coast.

[edit] Behaviour

[edit] Breeding

Photo by ScreechIsland Beach State Park, New Jersey, USA, January 2011
Photo by Screech
Island Beach State Park, New Jersey, USA, January 2011

They build their nests on the ground. They tend to return to breed at the colony where they hatched. Once they have bred, they are likely to return to the same breeding spot each year, often nesting within a few meters of the last year's nest site.

[edit] Diet

Includes insects, fish, grain, eggs, earthworms and rodents.

[edit] References

  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2015. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2015, with updates to August 2015. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/

[edit] External Links


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