Mediterranean Gull (L. melanocephalus)

(last update: June 11, 2012 )

Mediterranean Gull 5cy HTJ4 November 30 2009, Le Portel / Boulogne-sur-Mer, NW France. Picture: Jean-Michel Sauvage.

Bird from Hungary. No history received yet. It is a gull playing hide and seek with observers: it was ringed as pullus on 17 June 2005 at Bosarkany, Gyor-Sopron-Moson, Hungary and she traveled 1189 km to Le Portel. It was first observed on 31 December 2007 by Jean-Michel. Two and a half years this bird wandered around, not to be recorded by anyone. This is the second time Jean-Michel watches this bird. The life history will tell if she was seen between 31.12.2007 and 30.11.2009.

From June to September, a complete moult takes place, into so-called "adult winter" plumage. The head pattern resembles the pattern in first winter birds, with blackish mask behind the eye. The mantle, scapulars, tertials and all the wing-coverts are replaced for plain pearl-grey feathers. The secondaries are completely white. The adult primaries are shiny pearly-grey, flashing white at a distance. There is a black line along the outer-web of P10 (and sometimes on P9 as well). Secondaries, under-wing and tail all completely white. The bare part coloration in adult plumage: Iris brown, orbital ring red or orangey-red, the bill red or orangey-red with a black bill-band and a yellowish tip and the legs dull reddish or dark. There is some variation in 3cy and 4cy wing-tip patterns.