American Herring Gull (smithsonianus)

(last update: October 30, 2015)

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American Herring Gull (smithsonianus) J01 1st cycle, August 14 2014 & May 22 2015, Appledore Island & Delaware Bay. Picture: Lauren Kras & Emily Weiser.

See Lauren's Flickr photostream. And aslo see website: The Gulls Of Appledore.

Green J01 banded in 2014 in this colony.

below: American Herring Gull (smithsonianus) J01 1st cycle (1CY), August 14 2014, Appledore Island, NH. Picture: Lauren Kras.

Completely juvenile plumage. Very pale bird overall. Still in fresh plumage indicated by the beige tones on the feathers. These parts will soon bleach to white leaving a contrasting patterned bird, unlike classic 1st cycle smith's.

below: American Herring Gull (smithsonianus) J01 1st cycle (2CY), May 22 2015, DuPont Nature Center, Delaware Bay. Picture: Emily Weiser.

Emily, who is studying waders, found this banded bird in May along the shores of Delaware Bay. The complete moult may commence any moment now, and the juvenile wing-coverts are very abraded, completely worn and bleached white. It is easy to tell which feather tracts were included in the post-juvenile moult (first pre-basic moult): there is a greyish scapular saddle and grey feathers on the flanks and belly.