Sunday, 19 February 2012

My Relationship with Gulls is on the Rocks

I headed down to Clover Point on Saturday in hopes of finding some gulls on the rocks to add to my personal gallery.  The scene was pretty typical for the location, with Harlequin Ducks in the surf just off the rocks, a sparse flock of Mew and Thayer's Gulls off the west side of the point, and a group of assorted hybrids on the grass in the middle of the driving ring.

Harlequin Ducks get their name from the male's clownlike feature reminiscent
of pantomime jesters dressed in diamond-patterned costumes

The unique pattern and contrasting colours puts Harlequin Ducks
among the sharpest waterfowl in the world in my opinion

A first-winter Glaucous-winged Gull sized up this clam for a while and I never did see how it dealt with it

This first-winter Mew Gull giving a lazy yawn

The dark-tipped bill and molt pattern of the wing coverts allow this bird to be aged as a second winter Mew Gull

The pure yellow bill and uniform mantle shade are good indicators this Mew Gull is an adult

A nice example of an adult Thayer's Gull that is starting to lose the winter head streaking

This adult Thayer's Gull shows the dusky mottling on its head typical of a winter adult

Not a bad session out with the gulls.  They allow close approach if you're patient but be prepared to get chilled along the waterfront!

1 comment:

  1. Hi Jeremy, just discovered your blog for the first time and as a regular yearly visitor to Canada from the UK found your Gull descriptions very useful. Excellent blog!