After peering at pictures in my newly acquired book Gulls of the World I'm inclined to think that this beautifully marked young bird is a lesser black-back:
All input very gratefully received!
Our herring gulls are red listed birds. Think about that the next time you hear some flaming idiot calling for a cull of them.
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Great clarity and colour again Clare, in my limited knowledge I would agree with your ID, a LBBG.
In reply to tony:
Tony T said:Great clarity and colour again Wendy
Tony T said:in my limited knowledge I would agree with your ID, a LBBG.
Lovely - thank you!
In reply to Clare:
I can state 2 things for certain.
I would also say that it’s likely a 1st year Lesser Black-backed. The first thing would be that it’s a recent photo and the bird has an all-black bill which would make it one of this year’s birds, and to my eye it has a more ‘slight’ look and also a darker overall appearance than a Herring Gull which would generally have an overall brownish and perhaps ‘chunkier’ look (although I’m sure that in the huge variation of 1st year birds you can also get relatively dark 1st year Herring Gulls.) Other things (also taken from your new book) would be the relatively dark tertials (1) and the dark anchor shaped markings on the scapulars (2).
Please be advised that I’m certainly no expert in this, I could well be a mile off, and I’ll be delighted if someone would come along and explain why this isn’t a 1st year (1cy) Lesser Black-backed Gull. As you know, large young Gulls can be a real problem to ID with any certainty, especially in their 1st year.
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In reply to Paul A:
Paul A said:
Great, Paul - that started my day with a smile!
Paul A said:Other things (also taken from your new book) would be the relatively dark tertials (1) and the dark anchor shaped markings on the scapulars (2).
That's why I went for LBB. I compared my photos (taken on Monday) with the pictures of the herring gull and they just didn't look right.
Thanks for your help, Paul - not least for the book tip.
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