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Subject:[mou-net] Thayer's Gull & Nelson's Gull (photos) - Canal Park
From:Erik Bruhnke <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Erik Bruhnke <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Mon, 29 Nov 2010 22:33:03 -0700

This morning I birdwatched at Canal Park. Among the many HERRING GULLS was
one adult THAYER'S GULL, one NELSON'S GULL (Herring x Glaucous hybrid), and
one RING-BILLED GULL. Many COMMON GOLDENEYES were observed this morning as

Below are my favorite recent photos of gulls:

Thayer's Gull:

Herring Gull:

Nelson's Gull:

Ring-billed Gull (only one seen this morning):

On the adult Thayer's Gulls, note the tongue extensions on the wing. The
tongues are the sections of gray that "push into" the black primaries.
Herring Gulls have much more black throughout the ends of the wings (very
black primaries), whereas the amount of black on adult Thayer's Gulls
primaries is somewhat limited due to the gray tongues taking place of the
black coloration. Also, adult Thayer's Gulls have considerable tongue tips
(the white section of the tongues that go into the black). The other feature
that gives adult Thayer's Gulls a very pale-wing-ended appearance are the
mirrors (white inset sections of the primaries). Adult Thayer's Gulls show
an isolated large white mirror on the outermost primary, and typically have
a bulging, but connected mirror on the P9 (2nd-outermost primary). Overall
adult Thayer's Gulls, even when viewed with the naked eye, have a
rounder/paler-winged appearance due to the amount of white at the end of the
wing. Herring Gulls, with the large amount of black throughout the
primaries, show very well-defined and elongated-looking wing ends. Thayer's
Gulls also tend to show a slightly more round-headed appearance when viewed
in nearby comparison to the slightly more blocky-headed Herring Gull. Just
wanted to throw some cool gull tidbits out there!

I just love the high contrast of adult Thayer's Gulls. They are so striking!
When seen next to an adult Herring Gull (like in the first Thayer's Gull
photo link), the adult Thayer's Gulls have a slightly darker gray mantle
(backside), usually a dark eye, and a bright yellow bill. I hope you enjoy
the photos of these cool birds.

Good birdwatching,
Erik Bruhnke
Duluth, MN

NATURALLY AVIAN - Bird Photography and Guided Bird Hikes

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