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Herring Gull Larus argentatus

Herring Gull

Fieldmarks: Large gull with head-to-tail length of 56-66 cm (22-26 in). Plumage varies with age and season. Large bill, flesh colored legs. Adults have a yellow bill with a red spot near the tip of the mandible.

Occurs mostly along beach-fronts, around marinas, and at land fills. In West Indies, typically present as local vagrant September through May. Fairly common in Gulf of Mexico and Bermuda. Uncommon in The Bahamas, Cuba, and Cayman Islands. Rare elsewhere in the Antilles and quite rare in the Lesser Antilles. Species is increasing in population size and its wintering range is expanding.

Natural History: Nests in the northern latitutes of North America, Europe, and Asia. Ten subspecies recognized but individuals in the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean are of the North American variety. Range expanding and in eastern North America, the species now breeds as far south as North Carolina. Some individuals retain aspects of sub-adult plumage into their fourth summer.

West Indian Breeding Seabird Atlas by Will Mackin and David Lee is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Based on work at www.wicbirds.net. Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at www.wicbirds.net.

Suggested Citation: Lee, D. S., W. A. Mackin. 2012. Herring Gull. West Indian Breeding Seabird Atlas <http://www.wicbirds.net/hegu.html>. Last Updated: _____. Date accessed: ______.

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January 12, 2012
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