Home | What's New | About Martin | Contact | Can I use these Images? | General Links |
 Gulls | Other Birds: Identification | Other Birds: Interesting/Unusual | Dragonflies | Butterflies | Other Wildlife | Scenics | Places
Gull Links |

This intriguing first-basic gull was photographed November 18,2002 in Fort Worth, Texas by Martin Reid; the tone of gray to the upperparts was distinctly darker than any nearby RBGU at the same angle. I have studied - not just looked at - thousands of RBGUs (usually it's the only gull I get to study), and I've never seen an RBGU that looked darker than the norm. Small numbers of first-basics are slightly paler than standard, but not darker. While I feel the general structure and plumage is not much different to RBGU, it is intertesting to note some similarities to Kamchatka Gull (Larus (canus) kamchatscensis):- the darker mantle; plain centers to the tertials (the thick white fringe to the 2nd-lowermost tertial that ends before reaching the tip of the inner covert, is classic Kamchatka Gull); the brownish tinge to the primaries; and especially, the obvious greenish-blue color of the visible tibia on the standing leg - again I've never seen this color on a first-basic RBGU; even in late winter the most extreme variation in RBGU seems to be a slight graying in the area, but never as intense as on this bird:

Kamchatka Gull is extremely variable, as a browse of these birds in Japan reveals. Given that I have found eight Mew Gulls during my RBGU studies in Fort Worth, yet never seen a bird like this one before, it seems more likely to me that this is not a RBGU. It might be a hybrid RBGU x Mew, but could it be a Kamchatka Gull???