[CT Birds] Long Beach Snowy Owl; Iceland Gulls

Nick Bonomo nbonomo at gmail.com
Thu Dec 26 15:10:49 EST 2013

My parents wanted to see a Snowy Owl today so I took them down to Long
Beach in Stratford. A long walk down the beach resulting in a staked-out
heavily-marked SNOWY OWL on the last jetty that provided nice scope views.
Other birders reported a second owl at the tip of the same long jetty. Also
seen were that large second-cycle ICELAND GULL, a MERLIN, and a flock of

This Snowy Owl was certainly darker than two that were seen a couple days
ago. These three plus the rehabbed bird and the deceased one make at least
five seen at Long Beach. Makes you wonder quite how many birds have been
involved over these past few weeks.

Though I didn't get any time at all to study the controversial Iceland
Gull, this was my first time ever seeing the bird in the field. My initial
in-life impressions echo those of Julian Hough that it's a large Iceland
Gull, which was not always my feeling from some photo sets. Just like last
winter, we can say for sure that it is NOT a Glaucous Gull.

An adult ICELAND GULL was on the beach in front of Marnick's Restaurant in
Stratford by the seawall.

A first-winter ICELAND GULL continues at the Stop & Shop Plaza on Rte 5 in
Wallingford. If you look for the bird and it's not there, check a bit
further south down Route 5 at Shop Rite and Walmart. The gulls commute up
and down the busy road.

Merry Christmas!

Nick Bonomo
Wallingford, CT

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