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Lesser Black-backed Gull subspecies? (1 Viewer)


Well-known member
I took these two photos at Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge, Virginia, USA in late November 2010.
I thought the mantle color was pretty dark for our regularly occuring subspecies and wanted to see what others thought?

Another thing that really stood out to me was also how bright the yellow was on the legs- not real apparent in these shots, but obvious from a long distance even through heat shimmer.




  • LBBG-flying Chincoteague Nov2010.jpg
    LBBG-flying Chincoteague Nov2010.jpg
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  • LBBG-1 Chincoteague Nov2010.jpg
    LBBG-1 Chincoteague Nov2010.jpg
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lou salomon

the birdonist
hi peter,

darkness of upperparts is not really visible in these pics as there's no comparison to other LBBG. but it looks pale enough to be a graellsii. 2 large mirrors support this ID although the (only) other contender intermedius can have an apreciable p9 mirror too. since intermedius can be rel. pale (maybe not as pale as palest graellsii) but also black, this subsp. is hard to exclude, neither is the so called "dutch intergrade", which is slightly darker than british and islandic birds are. still, there is quite some variation in upperparts tone so this would well be within ssp. graellsii.



Well-known member
Hi Lou,
Thanks for your thoughts. There were four LBBG present and they all appeared to be the same level of darkness on the mantle. I was using the comparison between the primary tips to the mantle for getting an idea of the darkness of the mantle.

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