Common Gull Larus canus canus & L.c. heinei
(last update: March 12, 2012)
Common Gull (Larus canus) 2cy September - December
Common Gull is a widespread species on the northern hemisphere with several sub-species: in N America brachyrhynchus,
in W Europe nominate canus, in W Asia and Russia heinei and in the Far
East sub-species kamtschatschensis.
2CY COMMON GULL
Common Gull has a partial moult in spring. It starts in February and is completed by April, leaving birds in so-called "first summer" plumage. The head turns much whiter, with the white chin, throat and breast white and dark streaking confined on the crown, hind-neck. The tertials, wing-coverts, primaries and tail-feathers are excluded from this moult and turn paler, the grey parts turn almost white and very worn at the tips. The dark primaries and the lesser coverts start to bleach to pale brown. The second generation grey scapulars create a saddle. The legs are greyish.
From June to October, a complete
moult will bring birds in so-called "second
winter" plumage. The head and hind-neck are strongly
spotted and from the hind-neck, these spots form streaks, creating a
collar running down the sides of the breast. Under-parts,
tail-coverts and rump are white. The second generation primaries
resemble adult primaries, but the black is more extensive in the
outer-wing, with black sub-terminal markings down to P4 or even to
P3. The greater and median primary coverts and the lesser coverts in
the carpal edge are dark centred as well. The white tips on the
outer primaries are ill-defined, wearing off quickly and the mirrors
on P9 and P10 are smaller than in full adult plumage. The tail is
all-white in race canus. The iris is brown, the greyish bill has a clear black bill-band.
|Common Gull canus 2cy E33M December 11 2011, Zaandam, The Netherlands. Picture: Maarten van Kleinwee.|
|Common Gull canus 2cy BLB E368.803 December 11 2011, Zaandam, The Netherlands. Picture: Maarten van Kleinwee.|
|Common Gull canus 2cy, October 24 2002, Etaples / Boulogne-sur-Mer, France (50.42N,1.34E).|