White-winged Gulls

I took a little ride out into Ontario this morning, mainly to look at the gulls at the dump on Lafleche Road, near St-Isadore. The birds were active around the dump and loafing on the frozen snow just to the east. It was a bit cold so it was window clamp time. I saw about 25 Glaucous and 10 Iceland of all ages, also there amongst the commoner gulls was an adult Thayer’s. I took a few shots, digiscoped on the ground and through the big lens in flight when a Rough-legged Hawk put them all up. The photos below are not great but the group down shows one 1st year Glaucous with probably another behind it(extreme left) although it never lifted its head and I couldn’t see any of the other features too well. The flight shot is marked with red dots to signify the white-winged gulls, the view represents about a fifth of the flock size. I think that there is still a dump near Lachute in Quebec, I’ll be investigating next week. The only other birds of note were three Rough-legged Hawks, two birds were perched right by highway 417 but it was too busy (and illegal) to stop for photos.

I’ve had a bit of interest re my Panama trip, the details are at http://MTLBirdGuide.WordPress.com/ I did some re-pricing because it was not going to be as much as I thought. The trip goes in March if there is enough interest so, if you have never been to the tropics but would like too and you have the time and money, sign up for what would be a great trip.

Visit the Panama Canal Zone in March 2012 for $1850CAN or less depending on numbers, all inclusive accommondation and direct flights – see my guiding blog for details.

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2 thoughts on “White-winged Gulls

  1. A little tip for separating Glaucous and Iceland. The latter shows a long wing projection after the tail while Glaucous has a very shorth one. This comes from the fact that glaucous has a long tail. Thayer is quite a good bird here. I do not feel I could separate them from the so varaible Kunlien’s I see here. Some have so much black on their primary it is amazing

    • Hi Jean-Pierre

      I couldn’t quite see the tertial step and primary projection properly at the angle I was at but I suspect that the second WW Gull in the frame was also a Glaucous. Re the Thayer’s, I was looking out for one, Mark Gawn had reported one there a while previously although I hadn’t expected to see it. I was very lucky, the Thayer’s was isolated from the main group and was preening. The nape ‘staining’ attracted my attention first, I also saw the wings well. For me the overall structure of Thayer’s differs from Kumlien’s, I do take your point about primary color though. Thayer’s actually reminds me of a smaller version of a Caspian Gull in structure, particularly around the head. Thanks for your comments, much appreciated – Best wishes, Mark

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