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Gulls for a simpleton! (1 Viewer)

gareth_blockley

Smile people
I've been trying to get my head around gulls recently and am having trouble with where some of the subspecies are placed (and thats before they are officailly split!). Here's what i've got so far:

Herring gull:
W. Europe - L. a. argenteus
Scandinavian/baltic - L. a. argentatus
American - L. a. smithsonianus

YL gull:
YLG - L. m. michahellis
Caspian - L. m. cachinnans
Armenian - L. m. armenicus

LBB Gull:
W. Europe - L. f. graellsii
Scandinavian - L. f. intermedius
Baltic - L. f. fuscus
Russian - L. f. heuglini


How does that sit with you guys? Feel free to correct or fill in the gaps as you see fit!

Also if someone refers to a 'Baltic' gull would it be Herring or LBB?

Gareth
 
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Xenospiza

Distracted
Supporter
Baltic always means Larus fuscus fuscus. I guess the other guys presently reading this thread will fill you in...
 

l_raty

laurent raty
What situation do you want (what authority, what point in time, etc...)?

In the past, the "traditional" classification has been :
- Herring gull Larus argentatus, with sspp. argentatus, argenteus, smithsonianus and vegae;
- Yellow-legged gull Larus cachinnans, with sspp. cachinnans, michahellis, atlantis, armenicus, barabensis and mongolicus;
- LBB gull Larus fuscus, with sspp. fuscus, intermedius, graellsii, heuglini and taimyrensis.
(NB - "L. michahellis cachinnans" is a nomenclatural impossibility.)
The most frequent variation from this has been the recognition of Armenian gull Larus armenicus as an additional monotypic species (HBW, Howard & Moore, etc...).

This classification, however, has never been recognised by the BOU. Assuming the last (4th) TSC report is representative of the previous position of the BOU prior to the recent splits (? - the position of the BOU regarding several taxa unrecorded in Britain had in fact never been made clear before these splits were published...), the situation would have been :
- Herring gull L. argentatus, with sspp. argentatus, argenteus, smithsonianus, vegae, taimyrensis, heuglini, cachinnans, michahellis, atlantis, armenicus, barabensis and mongolicus;
- LBB gull L. fuscus with sspp. fuscus, intermedius and graellsii.

In their 3rd report, the BOURC-TSC separated yellow-legged and Armenian gull from this very broad herring gull, but with yellow-legged gull limited to the Mediterranean/Atlantic forms (i.e., cachinnans and the more eastern taxa were kept in the herring gull). Thus :
- Yellow-legged gull L. michahellis, with sspp. michahellis and atlantis;
- Armenian gull L. armenicus, monotypic;
- Herring gull L. argentatus, with sspp. argentatus, argenteus, smithsonianus, vegae, taimyrensis, heuglini, cachinnans, barabensis and mongolicus;
- LBB gull L. fuscus with sspp. fuscus, intermedius and graellsii.

In their 4th report, they further separated Caspian gull, and American herring gull, the latter including smithsonianus, vegae and mongolicus, and they transferred heuglini, taimyrensis and barabensis to LBB gull. Which then gives :
- Yellow-legged gull L. michahellis, with sspp. michahellis and atlantis;
- Armenian gull L. armenicus, monotypic;
- Herring gull L. argentatus, with sspp. argentatus and argenteus;
- American herring gull L. smithsonianus, with sspp. smithsonianus, vegae and mongolicus;
- Caspian gull L. cachinnans, monotypic;
- LBB gull L. fuscus with sspp. fuscus, intermedius, graellsii, taimyrensis, heuglini and barabensis.

"Baltic gull" should be Larus fuscus fuscus, indeed.
But beware that "Baltic herring gull" is a colloquial term to designate L. argentatus argentatus from the Baltic sea area (particularly from those populations where yellow legs occur quite regularly, and that have been called "L. argentatus omissus").

Laurent -
 

gareth_blockley

Smile people
Thank you

I think i get it, i had to read it a couple of times though (did you read the title of the thread?! ;-) ).

So these splits are not yet official with the BOU but are generally accepted in the birding world?

Gareth
 

Gentoo

Guest
Just on a side note after reading this list. If the AUO and BOU finally follow the split of American Herring Gull, I think a new name would be appropriate.
 

SteveClifton

Well-known member
I think i get it, i had to read it a couple of times though (did you read the title of the thread?! ;-) ).

Gulls and simpletons don't really go together!! If you want simple, then they are all 'seagulls' only some aren't (if you know what I mean?)
 
Gulls and simpletons don't really go together!! If you want simple, then they are all 'seagulls' only some aren't (if you know what I mean?)

They have too or else here in Bahrain none of our gulls will be ever identified. Have recieved some good information in an other forum about gulls see
http://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?t=100197 - pages 8 onwards to

Quote

howard, just a clarification on recent use of gull names, since you used some on your website:

larus fuscus generally is called lesser-black-backed gull but as a distinction from western races graellsii and intermedius, the nominate race fuscus (which winters at your place) often is called baltic gull. so the ones you see (small, black mantled and very long winged) are "baltic gulls".

larus (fuscus) heuglini usually is called siberian gull (or heuglin's gull)
larus (cachinnans/heuglini) barabensis = steppe gull
larus cachinnans = caspian gull (since yellow-legged gull is used only for larus michahellis.


We get in addition to these Armenian Gulls and also form Taimyrensis so we can assume we also get a good mix of xbreeds of all
 
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Farnboro John

Well-known member
Just on a side note after reading this list. If the AUO and BOU finally follow the split of American Herring Gull, I think a new name would be appropriate.

I don't, American Herring Gull works fine for me, even if it does splash over into Asia. Its bad enough people talking about "Smickers", if we turn it into Mongolian Gull (for instance) who fancies going twitching for a "Mong"? Not me! And as for where you might go with vegae......

John
 

Gentoo

Guest
The AOU don't really seem inclined to follow the split for now, anyway...
http://aou.org/committees/nacc/proposals/2007_B_votes_web.php3

L -
Ah ha! this is what I was looking for on that whole didn't get a response thing from playing the calls of one to another. "The vocal data consist solely of differences in response to alarm calls played during the non-breeding season, rather than of vocalizations that might be used for species discrimination while breeding. While interesting, these results cannot be viewed as definitive.The vocal data in Frings et al. (1958) on response of Euro Herring Gulls to smithsonianus vocalizations has no bearing on their reproductive isolation: the tests for difference in responses were done at different times of the year and by different people, they seemed to only test repellent alarm calls, and they were not done on breeding grounds."as well as
The acoustic evidence seems dubious to me, as it comes from an era (1958) before people really understood how to do playback experiments with the appropriate controls (but I didn't check that paper myself)

and to answer this
I don't, American Herring Gull works fine for me, even if it does splash over into Asia. Its bad enough people talking about "Smickers", if we turn it into Mongolian Gull (for instance) who fancies going twitching for a "Mong"? Not me! And as for where you might go with vegae......
Perhaps name it on it's breeding range which is roughly consistant with the Taiga belt. Yes I'm radically suggesting Taiga Gull.



Now that I think about it, nevermind. LOL

For the most part though, I am in the no camp as far as slitting them is concerned. As for this comparson
They certainly seem better differentiated than say Larus glaucescens from L. occidentalis, which we continue to maintain as two species.
These two are even more distinguishable in all plumages and they have calls, long calls especially, that even someone who isn't familiar with them can readily identify. Check this out:
Just click play on the left hand side of the page. The long calls are the first ones heard.

GWG
http://www.enature.com/fieldguides/view_default.asp?allSpecies=y&searchText=glaucous-winged gull

WEGU
http://www.enature.com/fieldguides/view_default.asp?allSpecies=y&searchText=western gull

One cannot hear such a big difference in Herring Gulls.
 

Richard Klim

-------------------------
...now I am really confused about whats what plus which and when do I lump clump and bump the different forms we have here in Middle East.

Howard,

My website (see below) summarises exactly which 'authorities' currently split each of the gull taxa. Have a look and then take your pick!

Richard
 

Richard Klim

-------------------------
Is pontic gull very rare right now? This is only the first time that I heard this name.
I don't think the name 'Pontic Gull' ever really caught on with English-speaking birders. DB has since adopted the more widely used English name 'Caspian Gull' instead.

Richard
 

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