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Re: NESS Great Black-backed Gull

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  • Joseph Morlan
    Thanks to a generous contribution from Chet McGaugh, two photos of the apparent GREAT BLACK-BACKED GULL have been posted on the WFO web site. You can click
    Message 1 of 1 , May 2, 2013
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      Thanks to a generous contribution from Chet McGaugh, two photos of the
      apparent GREAT BLACK-BACKED GULL have been posted on the WFO web site. You
      can click through on the thumbnails on the front page...

      http://www.westernfieldornithologists.org/

      Direct link...

      http://www.westernfieldornithologists.org/gallery/displayimage.php?pid=595

      Click on the images for higher resolution.

      Two additional photos have been posted on the California Bird Records
      Committee gallery...

      http://www.californiabirds.org/photos/index.html

      Direct link...

      http://www.californiabirds.org/photos/GBBGphoto31.htm

      Enjoy!


      On Wed, 1 May 2013 22:14:09 -0700, Chet McGaugh <chetmcgaugh@...>
      wrote:

      >Dave Goodward and I spent the day at spots around the north end of the
      >Salton Sea, most time spent at Salt Creek on the east side and and 84th Ave
      >on the west. Salt Creek continues as the best shorebird spot within a
      >decent walk from the highway. Dave counted 150+ Red Knots, the season high
      > at NESS, and several Sanderlings and a few Dunlins were among the
      >decreasing Calidrids. Dowitchers continue to be scarce, two Long-bills for
      >the day. Snowy Plovers have nested successfully. Bonaparte's Gulls are
      >still present in the 100s. Common Loon, several Red-breasted Mergansers and
      >a few Brant were seen. Passerine migrants included Western Wood-Pewees,
      >Warbling Vireo, and Yellow and Wilson's warblers.
      >
      >Early in the afternoon, after breakfast, we rolled out to the end of 84th
      >and the gull flock left the beach for the water. A quick scan and we found
      >a very dark, seeming long-winged gull floating with the Eared Grebes, Ruddy
      >Ducks, and California Gulls off shore. We were impressed by how truly black
      >it's mantle was. Wanting to see it's legs, we waited an hour and a half
      >later for the slow float back to the beach which ended when it climbed up
      >the barnacle beach. Not a Yellow-footed Gull. Very pale pink feet, legs
      >more pale fleshy than pink. While we were waiting for the return to shore
      >we had studied up on large black gull identification and determined that
      >the primary pattern, orbital ring color, leg color, mantle/primary
      >contrast, and overall size and voice are critical points. We worked that
      >bird, photographed it on the beach, in the water, and in the air for 2+
      >hours and have concluded, pending the scrutiny required and expected, that
      >our gull is a Great Black-backed Gull, which I believe to be, if accepted
      >by the CBRC, the first for California.
      >Chet
      >
      >
      >[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      --
      Joseph Morlan, Pacifica, CA
      "It turns out we're very good at not seeing things" - Jack Hitt
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