Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Iceland Gull (larus glaucoides) - South Sheilds - February 2012

The following photos (unless otherwise stated) are all taken and kindly supplied by Stephen Egglestone.  The following photos were taken at Marine Park in South Shields on Monday (13th) and are of an 4th winter Iceland Gull. The bird appears largely in adult like plumage, however Mark Newsome pointed out that I had failed to realise the dark subterminal band on the bill. This feature puts the bird as a 4th winter rather than an adult. South Shields lies in the recording area of Durham and was made famous in birding terms recently by the occurrence of the UK's first Eastern Crowned Warbler.

(Iceland Gull - © Stephen Egglestone) 
A bird like this can usually leave little doubt on identity, typical size for Iceland Gull; being relatively the same size as surrounding Herring Gulls. All white plumage very evident in a bird like this from both above and below.

 (Iceland Gull - © Stephen Egglestone) 
Mind your step! Showing the translucent effect of secondaries and both inner and outer primaries, clear lack of any grey shading eliminates the possibility of 'standard' Kumlien's Gull

(Iceland Gull - © Stephen Egglestone) 
Bit of a stunner or what? Pure white primaries, greenish tinge to bill, small eye creating a 'cute' look rather than 'rough and ready' which is usually more typical of Glaucous Gull. This bird is a classic Iceland Gull in every way. 

Stephen Egglestone's (Steve) personal blog can be found HERE.

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