Oyster Bay 12/5 - Kumlien's Iceland Gull (or perhaps very pale Thayer's?)


Noah Arthur
 

This afternoon John Cant and I gulled Oyster Bay Shoreline in San Leandro, mostly focusing on the large congregation of gulls bathing and loafing on the slough on the north side of the park (I call the place Tufted Duck Slough because of the distinguished visitor it harbored last winter). Best bird was a gray-winged Thayer's-type that we identified as a third-cycle KUMLIEN'S ICELAND GULL. The bird never flew, but when I looked back at my photos later, I realized I'd photographed this same bird on Tuesday, including a blurry but telling flight shot! The dark marks extend only to P6 at best. The head and bill are a little bulky (although, of course, the apparent shape changed from moment to moment depending on posture), but I don't think those wingtips are within the range of variation of known Thayer's Gulls. I'm open to suggestions, though!
 
Another interesting bird was an adult Western or Western-type gull with yellow legs. Will let you know if this bird turns out to be a Yellow-footed Gull, but for now I'm not calling it anything other than a Western until further notice.
 
Noah Arthur, Oakland

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