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American Avocets and Lesser Black-backed Gull at Bunche Beach

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  • Cheyenne Szydlo
    Yesterday evening (1/24) at high tide, there were a lot of gulls feasting on all the dead fish washed up on Bunche Beach. There were mostly Ring-billed and
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 25, 2010
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      Yesterday evening (1/24) at high tide, there were a lot of gulls feasting on all the dead fish washed up on Bunche Beach. There were mostly Ring-billed and Laughing Gulls, but I did see one 1st winter Lesser Black-backed and an adult non-breeding Herring Gull.  I saw one other gull that stumped me for awhile, and I have tentatively ID'd it as another 1st winter Lesser Black-backed. What stumped me was how much white was in the scapulars -- much paler than I am seeing in Lesser Black-backed photos in 'Gulls of the Americas' and Sibley. The bird was smaller than the adult Herring, larger than the Ring-bills, and had a dark eye and pale pink legs. Its bill was solid black with the exception of the tip of the lower mandible which was translucent or pale.  Any suggestions?
       
      Also, there were three American Avocets mixed in with the usual terns, skimmers, and sanderlings -- the first time I've seen them at Bunche!
       
      -Cheyenne

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