01 October 2018

Putative Chandeleur Gull - Back Again

Since at least Fall of 2006, this putative Kelp x Herring hybrid (Chandeleur Gull) is back again for another winter! I spent about an hour of quality time with it early Sunday morning on the beach in Michigan City.

I must admit the photos are underexposed, and the early morning glow gives a darker sheen to the upperparts.

It still shows black markings on all of the visible primaries. Notice the small, squared, mirror on p10 and the relatively late primary molt for this time of year. By mid-winter, there will be fine dark streaks to the head and neck, sparsely scattered throughout. Leg color will also dullen and start to show a sickly grayish color.