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Length 39β45 cm (15ΒΌ-17ΒΎ in), wingspan 105β113 cm, weight 275β415 g
Adults in non-breeding plumage are similar, but the hood is flecked with small white spots.
Juvenile: chocolate brown head, neck and breast, brown, broadly pale-fringed, feathers to upperparts and upperwings, black tail, black bill. Greyer feathering on their head, breast and upperparts appear during the first winter; second-winter plumage is closer to that of the adult, but lacking the hood.
 Similar Species
Sooty Gull is closely related and occurs in the same area; it differs in being larger and stouter, and browner above; it has a heavy bill with a yellow base and small red tip (pale grey with a black tip in immatures).
Very rare vagrant to the Mediterranean coast of Israel (3 records), the United Arab Emirates (3 records), and south to Kenya (1 record) and the Maldives. Two historical (19th century) records from Greece are supported by museum specimens.
Like the other species in its genus, it was formerly included in the genus Larus.
Inshore islands with rocks and sandy beaches.
Classified as Near Threatened in the 2008 IUCN Red List.2
Their diet consists mostly of fish, crustaceans, molluscs, annelids and offal. They also eat some fruit.
They make a shallow scrape nest, lined with seaweed and debris, located on bare rock, sand or exposed flats. The clutch contains 2-3 eggs. They have a single brood, but may try again if the first clutch is lost.
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