Bill Henderson's picture

Gull?

Observed: 29th September 2013 By: Bill HendersonBill Henderson’s reputation in BirdsBill Henderson’s reputation in BirdsBill Henderson’s reputation in BirdsBill Henderson’s reputation in Birds
jims gull
Description:

Lifted from a friend's Facebook page (with permission). At the risk of appearing stupid I'm guessing a Glaucaus Gull or am I seeing black at the wing tips?

Identifications
Species interactions

No interactions present.

Species with which Herring Gull (Larus argentatus) interacts

Comments

Mydaea's picture

The black is perfectly clear.

The black is perfectly clear. Herring gull.

Bill Henderson's picture

Black Wing Tips

Hi

I'm okay with being wrong. I'm still a beginner keen to learn. However, I'm still not sure. Some of that black is shadow and any of the pictures I've seen of herring gulls show more black than on this photo.

Where's Ian and Chris?

Bill

Bill Henderson

ophrys's picture

Black

Any black on the primaries rules out Glaucous gull, so this is a Herring Gull. I thought it was shadow at first, but a closer look shows it to be actual black feathers. The primaries appear to be growing, then, and not their full length.

It does show a lot of features of Glaucous, like a long neck, a heavy bill, apparently pale grey wings and a large white wing crescent. It could be a large northern European Herring Gull, perhaps.

Ian
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Bill Henderson's picture

re Black

Ian

Thanks for the explanation. It is very much appreciated.

I don't think that I'll ever get the hang of this birdwatching :-(

Bill

Bill Henderson

Ray Turner's picture

Black??

I have to say although I agree with the Herring Gull ID the black escapes me and I have every sympathy for Bill. I have downloaded the image and looked at it very closely; I can see a light tone grey, consistent with the mantle, on the longest showing primary (which interestingly is barred) accentuated by the dense shadow.

Ray

Ray

Mydaea's picture

I did the same, but have come

I did the same, but have come to very different conclusions. I think the darkest shade is clearly black pigment, not shadow, and the pale tips are much paler (= white) than the mantle. If the dark is a shadow, what is casting it? As it stops exactly at the edge of the secondaries/tertials, it would have to be these, but there is no match of shape between the edge of the shadow and that of the other feathers. The 'barring' is caused by slight undulations in the feather vane.