What kind of Gull?

I saw this Gull on Reddington Beach, a beach on the Gulf of Mexico, Central Florida.  I spotted an adult Lesser Black-backed Gull and knew there was a Greater Backed Gull near.  Maybe this relevant; maybe not.  Unfortunately, I was not able to get a photo of this one near either which would have given us a better idea of size.  This juvenile was a few inches taller than the Ring-billed Gulls that it stood close by.

The unknown Gull seen on the Gulf of Mexico, central Florida, March 8, 2012

The unknown Gull seen on the Gulf of Mexico, central Florida, March 8, 2012

What kind of Gull is this?

What kind of Gull is this?

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7 responses to “What kind of Gull?

  1. Juvenile gulls can be very hard to identify but I can tell a few things about this bird without knowing size. The head is certainly too lightly colored to be a GBBG. Perhaps a LBBG because of the lightly colored underparts but this is widely variable. The only other possibility would be a first winter Herring Gull. I have seen so many of these inland since Sandy and they are always more widespread than either of the Black Backed Gulls that I would hazard a guess at Herring Gull.

  2. (subscribing)

  3. First year Herring Gull would also be my guess. The only way to know for sure would be to have this bird next to a fourth year+ adult of either species: the relative size would be a clear clue.

  4. I recently had a very similar gull from Lake Michigan I was mulling over. I found this website, and discovered mine looked a lot like the second Figure 9 (they must have had some editing mishaps) on that page. Perhaps that one or some of the others are a good match for yours as well. (Sorry that they’re Herrings, tho…)

    http://www.tertial.us/gulls/smith1.htm

  5. Great guesses. This is a tough one, but not a Herring Gull. Do you want to try again before I ID it?

  6. Speaking for myself…the suspense is killing me! 😀

  7. The pic I posted above is a first cycle Lesser Black-backed Gull. Interestingly, there were two adults spotted in the same area, one by me the same day I saw the above. For a comparison, check out the newer post, titled “First cycle Herring Gull January 23, 2013” because I didn’t take the take to come up with a catchier title.