[CT Birds] Southport "Mew" Gull description important

julian hough jrhough1 at snet.net
Fri Apr 10 13:50:00 EDT 2015

Great job...just to throw this out there from a recording purpose, but any reported Mew Gull needs to go one step further and be assigned to race, since this form occurs in North America, Europe and Asia and may be split down the road.So, it would be good to get a subspecific identity on this bird, and try and communicate whether a west coast Mew Gull (brachryrhyncus), the Eurasian race of mew gull (canus), often referred to as Common Gull, or even the larger Asian race, referred to colloquially as Kamchatka Gull (kamtschatschensis). The latter has been recorded several times in Mass and also at least once in Rhode island is also a potential addition to the CT list. With two, west coast Mew Gulls recently in Brooklyn, NY, a Common Gull in Southbury, and up to two Kamchatka Gulls near Boston this winter, any "Mew" type gull found in CT needs to be scrutinized carefully in order to assign it to race.
Features to consider that will help identify adult "mew"-type Gulls to race:Bill size, especially any dusky markings, or lack of, on the bill tipMantle color, the darkness compared to Ring-billed Gull and Lesser-black-backed Gull for instanceWing tip pattern, photos here are a must have if possibleOverall size - compared with Ring-billed GullHead markings and extent, pattern and color of streaking (if still present).
Great find, get photos and enjoy! Julian Hough
New Haven, CT 06519

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