29 April 2017

April 2017 Quiz

Age: Rounded primary tips, gray scapulars and plain upperwing coverts all point to a 2nd cycle type large white-headed gull.

Identification: The pattern on the outer primaries - a so-called venetian blind effect - suggest a white-winged gull. The contrasting dark-brown outer webs with light-brown inner webs on the 5 outer primaries are reminiscent of Iceland Gull. The bill has retained much black with a pinched-base look, something we often find in Thayer's, and that's what the April Quiz bird was identified as.

2nd cycle Thayer's Iceland Gull. Milwaukee, Wisconsin. February 2017.

01 April 2017

Monthly Notables March 2017

  • Common Gull (adult). Rockingham County, New Hampshire. 01 March 2017.
  • Laughing Gull (adult). Lorain County, Ohio. 02 March 2017.
    • Pair-bonding behavior observed with adult Ring-billed all throughout the month.
  • Slaty-backed Gull (adult). San Mateo County, California. 02 March 2017.
    • Continuing from February.
  • Yellow-legged Gull (adult). 03 March 2017.
    • Presumed atlantis. Continuing.
  • Ivory Gull (1st cycle). Essex County, Ontario. 03 March 2017.
    • Found in Flint, Michigan a week later.
  • Little Gull (1st cycle). Berrien County, Michigan. 03 March 2017.
    • A single bird continued for several weeks - not associating with other small gulls.
  • Ivory Gull (1st cycle). Flint Michigan. 09 March 2017.
    • Seen everyday through 13 March 2017 and then found dead late that morning. The specimen was delivered to the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor).
  • Black-legged Kittiwake (1st cycle). Berrien County, Michigan. 10 March 2017.
  • Slaty-backed Gull (adult). Benton County, Washington. 12 March 2017.
  • Slaty-backed Gull (adult). St. John's County, Newfoundland. 17 March 2017.
  • Kamchatka Gull (adult). Fairfield County, Connecticut. 20 March 2017.
  • Black-headed Gull (adult). Sangamon County, Illinois. 23 March 2017.
    • First county record.
  • Lesser Black-backed Gull (1st cycle). Monterey County, California. 24 March 2017.
    • Originally found in January 2017 with complete juvenile plumage, this presumed Heuglin's Gull (L.f. heuglini), was later sighted at the same location with ~80% post-juvenile scapulars. Possible 1st record of this taxon in the lower 48 states.
  • Great Black-backed Gull (1st cycle). Loveland County, Colorado. 26 March 2017.
  • Common Gull (adult). Barnstable County, Massachusetts. 26 March 2017.
  • Mew Gull (adult). Richmond County, New York. 29 March 2017.

Monthly Notes

  • An adult type Laughing x Ring-billed hybrid was found in Lorain, Ohio on 06 March 2017. This while a pure adult Laughing Gull was hanging out in this same harbor with a large contingent of Ring-billed Gulls. This seems to now be an established phenomenon on the Great Lakes, where the occasional adult Laughing Gull is found with Ring-billeds, and shortly after, a putative hybrid is detected in the following year(s).
  • An overdue proposal to lump Thayer's and Iceland Gull has been submitted to the AOS Classification Committee (Proposal Set 2017-C).