Friday, February 4, 2011

Forgotten Photo Friday: Putting It All on the Line

After writing yesterday’s piece on identifying gulls, finding a gull to use as a stable datum and all that hoopla, I started to look for a forgotten photo and found a group of photos of gulls with white bodies, and bicolored, pink bills. I saw that I called them “Iceland Gulls”. Oh my, did I make a misidentification? Well the universe didn’t implode.

This is one of the photos. Oh my, out come the guide books.

©2011 ShootingMyUniverse

This is another one of the pictures I labeled as “Iceland Gull”. There were three of these bathing. Here are two.

©2011 ShootingMyUniverse

Now this is a Glaucous Gull. I know this for certain. It was Identified by none other than Chris Leahy, the Endowed Chair of the Mass Audubon. Plus, it was a big bird with a heavy bill. No doubts, Leahy or not, this is a Glaucous.

©2011 ShootingMyUniverse

Look at how heavy this bill is. Also, check out yesterday’s Glaucous Gull’s bill. You could open a #10 can with that bill.

©2011 ShootingMyUniverse

Back to my Iceland Gulls, check out the size of the bill. Much smaller than the Glaucous. And besides, the Iceland Gull is a good five inches smaller than the Glaucous.

©2011 ShootingMyUniverse

Yes, the judgment stands. Photos 1,2 and 5 are Iceland Gulls. Phew, I though I lost my mind which can happen if you spend too much time parsing out juvenile gulls. But in all honesty, the Iceland Gull is noticeably smaller than a Herring Gull, (my stable datum for comparing gulls) and the Glaucous Gull is about the same size. In these photos, there isn’t much to compare relative sizes.

Good Birding.


Dejemonos sorprender said...

Waw, amazing captures!! they are difficuld shots.. very nice birds..

texwisgirl said...

They're all beautiful, and since we almost never see them here (except a few hovering around parking lots) I love to see your photos.

Kelly said...

...oh my gosh...identifying gulls makes my head swim! Great photos...

Anna said...

We have many gulls here, and they always look different to me, I just call them gulls, lol. BTW these are amazing shots. Anna :)

Mike Simmons said...

Very nice shots Steve. You know your gulls! I like the dark transitioning to light in the wings of the third photo.

One of my granddaughters just saw this shot and commented how pretty it is.

Roy said...

Stable datum is one thing, but when you start looking at different age groups of the same species thats quite another.
They are all Gulls to me Steve.{:)

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