Wednesday, December 9, 2020

First cycle "COMMON" MEW GULL in New London, CT

When seen in Connecticut, Mew Gulls are pretty much always seen in the company of Ring-billed Gulls. So I was not expecting to find one at a tiny beach near the mouth of the Thames River where a whopping six Herring Gulls were resting. And yet that's exactly what flew in soon after I hopped out of the car for a quick scan of the river.

Coming right at me, I picked up on a medium-sized gull and stayed on it until it banked slightly, revealing an upperwing that was very low-contrast for a Ring-billed and a starkly black-and-white tail.

Hmmmm.

The bird landed in the water not far from the beach and had an obviously tiny, round head with an even tinier bill. It was a slam-dunk Mew Gull of the European subspecies canus. No trouble determining the subspecies of this one!

I had been keen on finding a first cycle Mew Gull locally, as all prior records were of adults or nearly so. So I was pumped about this one.

Luckily it stuck around long enough for me to grab the camera and get some shots. It lazily flew around the adjacent marinas for nearly 10 minutes and appeared quite settled-in, landing a few times, so I figured it would be relocated with relative ease. Wrong! It was not seen again the rest of the day, but it could absolutely still be in the area.










first cycle "Common" Mew Gull, L. c. canus

Also on site was this smart adult Lesser Black-backed Gull, a returning bird to the area for a few winters now


 - Nick

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