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Thread: Possible Caspian?

  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    Dec 2010

    Default Possible Caspian?

    Can any larophiles comment on this particular gull, which I'm thinking might be a 2nd winter Caspian Gull. The picture was taken on 20th Feb.
    It was Herring Gull sized but didn't look it, and the tail had a broad black terminal band with a white upper tail, with only very light flecking leaching up onto the white uppertail from the black band. The inner primaries were pale creating an obvious pale patch at rear of elbow. Black tertials, heavily fringed white. The head and neck was all white except for very light flecking on the lower nape and around the sides of the breast.
    Legs were yellowish-flesh. Eye dark.

    Not too many opportunites for studying gulls around here so any constructive comments would be most appreciated.
    The angle of the bird in the pic shows the grey on the mantle to be slightly darker than in life. A few 1st-winter feathers can be seen admixed with a more adult grey feathering.

    Many thanks.................Patchman13
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  2. #2
    Senior Member JanJ's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008


    Hi Patchman13.

    It might well be. However from this pic alone I wouldn´t bet on it, which means that another pic is necessarily, at least for me.


  3. #3
    Moderator Brian S's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Suffolk, UK


    I'd agree with Jan; perhaps the tail band looks a bit broad for Caspian?

    From this angle it is not possible to rule out Yellow-legged.

    Brian S

  4. #4
    Member lou's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    stuttgart, SW germany


    Quote Originally Posted by Brian S View Post
    I'd agree with Jan; perhaps the tail band looks a bit broad for Caspian?

    From this angle it is not possible to rule out Yellow-legged.

    Brian S

    it appears to be a 3cy (2nd cycle) due to large amount of black in tail and immature coverts. no mirror visible. in this age class even in mid march caspian tends to have a less advanced bill, usually not yellow or just a hint of yellow - unlike YLG which is prone to getting a yellow bill with less dark markings. from this point of view it is more likely a michahellis than a cachinnans. a side view would help, a flight shot even more.


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