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which of these are Lesser black-backed gulls

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Old Sunday 15th June 2014, 21:43   #1
tom baxter
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which of these are Lesser black-backed gulls

This evening I came across what appeared to me to be the highest count of lesser black-backed gulls, at one place in Cape May county NJ, that I have ever heard of. I want to get the exact number right, I have photos representing 11 different birds. In this thread I will exclude the images of birds with yellow bills/legs because they are obvious.

If you prefer to elaborate, feel free to answer any way you would like. I think the easiest and most comprehensive responses to satisfy my question will simply entail something like this:

Yes= LBBG
No= not LBBG

1. Yes
2. Yes
3. Yes
4. No
5. No

etc....

I will need to add another post to account for all my photos.

Thank you!
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Old Sunday 15th June 2014, 21:45   #2
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All birds are different individuals, in all 8 photos. In the 7th photo I want to know the identity of the bird in the foreground, but the bird in the background is the same as the bird in photo 6 just in case it helps
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Last edited by tom baxter : Sunday 15th June 2014 at 22:09.
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Old Monday 16th June 2014, 00:13   #3
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I will start. In the field I thought all of them were lesser black-backed. After review I think this:

#s 1,6,7,8 are not lbbg the rest are.
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Old Monday 16th June 2014, 12:36   #4
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#1 is a GBBG

#6 is too blurry to identify

The rest, I'd be happy with LBBG
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Old Monday 16th June 2014, 21:43   #5
tom baxter
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Awesome, thank you! This is the most I have ever seen at one place. That gives me 11 at Stone Harbor Point in Cape May NJ if 6/8 of these photos are confirmed. I have 4 with yellow bill/legs that are easily identifiable and there was 1 that I was unable to photograph. This is substantial to me, I am not completely knowledgeable about the breeding status of lbbg along the East coast but have heard that there are no known breeding colonies in NJ, yet the population continues to grow every year.
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Old Monday 16th June 2014, 21:46   #6
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Don't want to dent the enthusiasm but these are all subadults (probably 1st or 2nd summers), so need not be breeding nearby, they could easily have been bred in Iceland and just be loafing around in the wintering area the way subadult large gulls frequently do.
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Old Monday 16th June 2014, 21:52   #7
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I understand, thank you for your comments. I am excited that there were so many of them, and it is very interesting to me.
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Old Tuesday 17th June 2014, 00:19   #8
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Lesser Black-backed Gulls are still not breeding in North America, at least in any numbers or in any areas accessible to biologists. A few have paired with Herring Gulls, but I do not know of pure pairs.

They are definitely increasing as wintering birds, and, not surprising, the younger ones are often over-summering in the wintering grounds.

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