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January 25, 2017:
This First Cycle-type gull with the characteristics of Slaty-backed Gull (Larus schistisagus) was at Elliot Landfill, Corpus Christi, Texas on February 13th, 2007.

Features that point towards SBGU:

1) structure: the legs are fairly wide-apart and shortish, and there is a bit of a droop behind the legs, plusa long neck. The short primary extension beyond the tail plus exposed secondary tips below the coverts create a dumpy, broad-winged effect.

2) legs strongly pink - more pink than nearby American HERGs (some HERGs can have strongly pink legs - but it is a typical feature of SBGU).

3) head with eye placed slightly forward of center, surrounded by a small dark patch and with a short dark line extending back from the eye; the crown and forecrown with obvious, cleanly-demarcated dark streaks.

4) dark tail lacks any barring - instead having pale specking scattered on the base of R6 and R5, plus variable "soft" pale tips to the Rs - one of the classic patterns for SBGU.

5) primaries and secondaries with clearly paler inner webs than outer webs (contrast less distinct on overall paler inner Ps); in flight the outer Ps (plus their coverts), secondaries and tail are similar in tone and darker than the rest of the upperside.

6) from above all non-worn greater, median, and larger lesser secondary coverts are very pale on large inner web, slightly darker on thin outer web plus with similar-toned subterminal mark across both webs - overall effect is of a very pale inner wing with rows of darker spots.

7) from above all primary coverts match their overlain primary in tone and pattern (i.e. paler inner web); alula feathers slightly darker - the darkest part of the upperwing.

8) On standing bird, visible outer Ps with pale, narrow, uniform-width fringing at tip.

9) dense dark markings on uppertail coverts and undertail coverts typical of all large North American gulls plus SBGU.

note that the hot, sunny, sandy Gulf Coast beaches are different to the cool, cloudy, rocky coastlines that are the wintering grounds in Asia - bleaching and wear rates can be much faster in the Gulf of Mexico than in the eastern Pacific:

http://www23.tok2.com/home/jgull/DecSla/zDSCN1055.jpg - mid December

http://www23.tok2.com/home/jgull/080115/080115%20031_S.jpg - mid January

http://www23.tok2.com/home/jgull/SlaG1w01113/SlaG1w01113_3.JPG - mid January

- mid January; both are SBGUs - a nice demonstration of the variability in primary tone

http://www23.tok2.com/home/jgull/080115/080115%20122_S.jpg - mid-January; imagine this bird a month later and more sun-bleached and worn...

http://www23.tok2.com/home/jgull/080115/080115%20246_S.jpg - mid January

http://www23.tok2.com/home/jgull/040113/Sl_03.jpg - mid January; a darker individual but included to show what females can look like, structurally

http://www23.tok2.com/home/jgull/040113/Sl_08.jpg - Mid January; here's what the Ujihara's said about this bird: "A pale, advanced individual. This resembles somewhat Glaucous-winged Gulls. But its outer primaries and tail are dark in contrast to the rest. This type may suggest Glaucous-wingedXSlaty-backed as well, but I think this type is too common in Japan to be that, in comparison with the frequency of adults presumed to be the parentage. " - THEY DID NOT HAVE ANY MISGIVINGS ABOUT THE OTHER SBGUS LINKED ON THIS PAGE.

http://www23.tok2.com/home/jgull/070216/SLFL%20%2810%29.jpg - mid February

http://www23.tok2.com/home/jgull/070203/SBG%20%2810%29.jpg - early February

http://www23.tok2.com/home/jgull/070203/SBG%20%282%29.jpg - early February

http://www23.tok2.com/home/jgull/Sb1w_pCh.jpg - February

http://www23.tok2.com/home/jgull/Sb1s010427/Sb1s0104277.JPG - early April

http://www23.tok2.com/home/jgull/Sb1w010402/Sb1w010402_5.JPG - early April

http://www23.tok2.com/home/jgull/061101/Sb%20%287%29.jpg - November 1st; what would this look like in mid-February having wintered in the Gulf?

- November 1st; what would this look like in mid-February having wintered in the Gulf?

A page of birds from February 10th:

Two pages of birds from mid March:

A page of birds from early April:

A page from "eary Spring" - with primaries much paler than the TX bird:

- a bird from Korea in November

http://www.birdskorea.org/Images/ID_Notes/Slaty-backed-Gull/image16bleachedfwslatymarch92003guryongpoa.jpg - a bird from Korea in March