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 Yellow-legged Gull Larus michahellis

3cy, July 2016, West Midlands


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Presumed to be the <same individual> as at same site on various dates between Nov 2015 and March 2016. Size and structure, distribution of grey in retained wing-coverts, and behaviour (e.g. favoured buoy used as a perch) all suggest that the same individual was involved. By July, coverts, tertials and flight-feathers old and faded but head now gleaming white and bare parts well-advanced towards adult pattern (with a distinct yellow tinge to the legs, which is not displayed by all 'second summer' michahellis). Given that this is the same individual, it is interesting how lone YLGs appear to become attached to particular sites (c.f. the individual which has wintered at Kingsbury WP, Warks, for eight consecutive winters).

Yellow-legged Gull, 3cy (2S), WMids, July 2016

A. R. Dean


Postscript.  In January 2017 perhaps the same individual, with same size and configuration,  reappeared once more. It then resembled an adult apart from some black streaks on central tertials and primary coverts and a well-marked black area in the area of the gonys. In the literature, such an appearance is often associated with 4W but individuals known to be 3W show this appearance. See <here> for further details.

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