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Gulls, gulls, gulls... Maine coast

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Old Friday 5th October 2007, 23:19   #1
hbreder
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Gulls, gulls, gulls... Maine coast

I need some help getting an ID of these gulls; I took the photos over the past 3 days on the coast of Acadia National Park. I think most of them are mature and juvenile ring-billed gulls except for the one composite photo with the great black-backed gull which I kept in for size comparison. Hope of course that hidden among them is a Thayer's gull.
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Old Friday 5th October 2007, 23:23   #2
dan pointon
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The first is a Ring Billed Gull. I think Pic 2 shows a Yank Herring and a Great Black Backed Gull. All the other pics show Yank Herrings, though I can't say i'm certain about the birds in pic4.

D
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Old Friday 5th October 2007, 23:43   #3
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I agree with dan on all his identifications, though not necessarily the insinuation that our Herring Gulls aren't proper Herring Gulls. ;-) I'm not very good with immature gulls, but I don't think there are other east coast gulls that look like those in #4.
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Old Saturday 6th October 2007, 00:00   #4
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#1 Adult Ringbill
#2 Ad. Am. Herring & Ad. Great Blackback
#3 Ad. Am. Herring
#4 2 young Am. Herring and 1 1st winter Great Blackback
#5 Ad. Am. Herring
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Old Saturday 6th October 2007, 00:05   #5
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I wanted to add a couple more gulls but could only upload a max of 5 files. So here are 3 more.
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Old Saturday 6th October 2007, 01:03   #6
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In post #5, there are 3 Ring-billed Gulls and 1 Great Black-backed Gull.
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Old Saturday 6th October 2007, 08:05   #7
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Agree with Microstus except that on Great Blacked Backed on last pic is not obvious.
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Old Saturday 6th October 2007, 08:29   #8
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Image 4 in post 1 doesn´t strike me as a GBBG & 3 in post 5 is smithsonianus (American Herring Gull).

If the gull in image 3 in post 1 had been taken on the west Coast I would have considered a Western x Glaucous-winged Gull or Herring x Glaucous-winged Gull The bill has a heavy bulbous tip although the structure is quite Herring like.

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Old Saturday 6th October 2007, 11:04   #9
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I studied the pictures in post #5 again and realized that there is an American Herring Gull there and not a Great Black-back. Apologies for the confusion.
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Old Saturday 6th October 2007, 11:26   #10
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Thanks everyone for taking time to look and respond, and for your very helpful info! I went back to Sibley's to study and compare, and learned a lot from your comments.
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Old Saturday 6th October 2007, 14:55   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JANJ View Post

If the gull in image 3 in post 1 had been taken on the west Coast I would have considered a Western x Glaucous-winged Gull or Herring x Glaucous-winged Gull The bill has a heavy bulbous tip although the structure is quite Herring like.

JanJ
That gull in post 1 image 3 looks fine for Herring to me. They can be quite variable, but this guy is quite in their range. I cannot see any other genes that Herring in it.
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Old Saturday 6th October 2007, 15:01   #12
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That gull in post 1 image 3 looks fine for Herring to me. They can be quite variable, but this guy is quite in their range. I cannot see any other genes that Herring in it.

Yes, Herring Gulls are quite variable - but they don´t have bills like the one here, provided that the image shows what it was in real life.

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Old Saturday 6th October 2007, 16:01   #13
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but they don´t have bills like the one here
If you say so For my part I don't see anything wrong, this bill looks the same as the bill on picture 319 p 252 of Gulls from Olsen & Larsson and here the shape is exagerated by the flattened forehead.
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Old Saturday 6th October 2007, 16:21   #14
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Was there agreement on the second immature bird (further away, better focus) in photo #4 in the first post. Microtus said GBBG and Jan said HEGU. It's bigger, more contrasty, and has an all black bill, so my first thought was GBBG, but I would never have said so if Microtus handn't.

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Old Saturday 6th October 2007, 16:55   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JANJ View Post
Image 4 in post 1 doesn´t strike me as a GBBG & 3 in post 5 is smithsonianus (American Herring Gull).

If the gull in image 3 in post 1 had been taken on the west Coast I would have considered a Western x Glaucous-winged Gull or Herring x Glaucous-winged Gull The bill has a heavy bulbous tip although the structure is quite Herring like.

JanJ
YOu think so jan? Looks like a typical Herring Gull to me, at least in the sense that I would readily pick it out if it were in a west coast flock.
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Old Saturday 6th October 2007, 16:57   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cavan wood View Post
Was there agreement on the second immature bird (further away, better focus) in photo #4 in the first post. Microtus said GBBG and Jan said HEGU. It's bigger, more contrasty, and has an all black bill, so my first thought was GBBG, but I would never have said so if Microtus handn't.

Scott
I was thinking GBBG as well. smiths aren't that contrasting. Could be a stray argentatus/argenteus. It is that time of year.
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Old Sunday 7th October 2007, 02:20   #17
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Informational question: Are stray argenteus/argentatus found this early in North America?
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Old Sunday 7th October 2007, 05:26   #18
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Informational question: Are stray argenteus/argentatus found this early in North America?
none have been reported yet but since this is the migration season, especially from Iceland, it's possible to get bird of the year strays. Just a possibility.
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