[CT Birds] Long beach Iceland

Greg Hanisek ghanisek at rep-am.com
Thu Jan 16 16:07:31 EST 2014

I happened to see this gull for the first time a couple days ago, and I'd  have to agree with Julian that I don't see any reason to call it anything but kumlieni, give the variablity of that taxon. As a quick note for the many newer birders and new participants on this list, it's fine to call this an Iceland Gull, Larus glaucoides. Essentially, based on current taxonomy, all Iceland Gulls seen in our area are of the North American subspecies - Larus glaucoides kumleini (aka "Kumlien's" Gull, also an acceptable common name), breeding in eastern Arctic Canada.  The Old World subspecies of Iceland Gull, Larus glaucoides glaucoides, has never been documented in CT and has only rarely been recorded in North America.  It breeds in Greenland and winters in Europe. The NA birds (L. g. kumlieni) show varying amounts of gray in the wingtips (as does the Long Beach bird), while L. g. glaucoides has pure white wing tips.   
Greg Hanisek  

From: julian hough [mailto:jrhough1 at snet.net]
To: ctbirds at lists.ctbirding.org [mailto:ctbirds at lists.ctbirding.org]
Sent: Thu, 16 Jan 2014 13:13:06 -0500
Subject: [CT Birds] Long beach Iceland

Just to reitorate to others on the list that may not be aware or be confused, that the gull that has been at Long Beach - and labelled previously by some as a "hybrid" or Glaucous Gull for the past two years is, on plumage, a straightforward 2nd-cycle Iceland Gull, albeit a large one. It is perhaps misleading, at least in my opinion, to continue to refer to this bird as a hybrid.

Julian Hough
New Haven, CT 06519

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