30 November 2016

Monthly Notables November 2016

    • Black-legged Kittiwake (adult). Pueblo County, Colorado. 01 November 2016.
      • Continuing from last week of October.
    • Little Gull (adult). Union County, Indiana. 03 November 2016.
    • Black-headed Gull (adult). Accomack County, Virginia. 05 November 2016.
    • Yellow-legged Gull (adult). St. John's County, Newfoundland. 06 November 2016.
      • Continuing.
    • Thayer's Gull (adult). Nome County, Alaska. 06 November 2016.
      • Late. Very rare. 13th Fall Record for Nome.
    • Black-legged Kittiwake (juvenile). Lake County, Minnesota. 07 November 2016.
    • Laughing Gull (adult type). Mahoning County, Ohio. 07 November 2016.
    • Sabine's Gull (juvenile). Ketchikan Gateway County, Alaska. 09 November 2016.
      • Late. First November record for Ketchikan.
    • Lesser Black-backed Gull (2nd cycle). Portage la Prairie Area Co, Manitoba. 10 November 2016.
      • Continuing from June 2016.
    • Lesser Black-backed Gull (adult). Santa Clara County, California. 10 November 2016.
    • Western Gull (1st cycle). Salt Lake County, Utah. 11 November 2016.
      • Continuing from October 2016.
    • Black-legged Kittiwake (juvenile). Palm Beach County, Florida. 12 November 2016.
    • Ring-billed Gull (adult). Juneau County, Alaska. 13 November 2016.
    • Great Black-backed Gull (adult). Pueblo County, Colorado. 18 November 2016.
      • Believed to be the same returning adult for the 23rd year!
    • Glaucous Gull (juvenile). Power County, Idaho. 19 November 2016.
    • Vega Gull (adult). Santa Clara County, California. 22 November 2016.
      • Photos of a very promising individual with all the correct field marks. No open wing.
    • Slaty-backed Gull (adult type). St.John's County, Newfoundland. 23 November 2016.
    • Little Gull (1st cycle). Ventura County, California. 23 November 2016.
      • 3rd county record. First in 27 years for Ventura County!
    • Sabine's Gull (juvenile). Haines County, Alaska. 23 November 2016.
      • Late.
    • Slaty-backed Gull (adult). Pierce County, Washington. 24 November 2016.
      • Reoccurring at this site.
    • Iceland Gull (1st cycle). Salt Lake County, Utah. 24 November 2016.
      • Apparent Kumlien's Gull.
    • Lesser Black-backed Gull (adult). Riverside County, California. 26 November 2016.
    • Slaty-backed Gull (3rd cycle). Metro Vancouver County, British Columbia. 27 November 2016.
    • Black-headed Gull (adult). Butler County, Pennsylvania. 29 November 2016.
      • Presumably returning to this site since 2008.

    Miscellaneous Notes.
    1. Reported early this month was an intriguing 1st cycle bird from Superior, Wisconsin (observed in September). Plumage entirely juvenile. Body size, bill size and structure all seemed perfect for Ring-billed Gull which it was associating with. However, the inner primaries and greater coverts were plain and uniformly dark like a Lesser Black-backed Gull (and this is what the observers initially identified it as). After some discussion on North American Gulls (NAG), the bird was thought to either be a RBGU x LBBG or a melanistic Ring-billed. There is some precendence for the hybrid theory (see photos here of a Spanish bird suspected of this mix). It's important to emphasize that this pairing has never been verified in the wild - no courting or nesting evidence. As for melanistic Ring-billed Gull, melanism in gulls usually expresses itself unevenly and tends to be more blotchy. The Superior gull was "perfectly" pigmented like a fresh juvenile LBBG. The most likely explanation is a juvenile Ring-billed packed with a high dose of melanin. Observers: Robbye Johnson, Thomas Shultz and others. 
    2. A banded adult type Lesser Black-backed Gull was reported on the Mississippi River at Lock & Dam 3 in Goodhue County, Minnesota. The bird was sporting a black field-readable band on its right leg with 3 white characters. It also wore a metal band on its left leg. Unfortunately, the 3 characters on the black band can not be read clearly, but the combination matches none from North America. The only LBBG banding program using a similar field-readable is from the UK. Observer: Alex Franzen.
    3. Continuing the trend of increasing reports, putative Herring x Lesser Black-backeds were reported from several regions this month (Michigan, New York, several from New Foundland and Florida). All reports/photos represent adult birds.
    4. A very interesting adult gull with Taimyr/Mongolian-like attributes was photographed in Alameda County, California on 10 November 2016. The bird does not resemble any taxon or putative hybrid that regularly occurs in North America (photos here). Observer: Noah Arthur.