Black-billed gull

Chroicocephalus bulleri

The black-billed gull , also known as Buller's gull, is a species of gull in the family Laridae. It is found only in New Zealand.
Black-billed gull (Chroicocephalus bulleri) Rob Roy Glacier Track, Mt Aspiring NP, New Zealand. Jan 4, 2017. Black-billed gull,Chroicocephalus bulleri,Geotagged,New Zealand,Summer

Appearance

The black-billed gull is a lightly coloured gull with a small amount of black on its wingtips. It has a long, thin, black bill with a bright red interior, and reddish black feet and white eyes. The juvenile has a flesh coloured bill with a dark tip and dark brown eyes. As juvenile red-billed gulls display similarly dark bills and feet they may be confused with this species.

Distribution

The black-billed gull is endemic to New Zealand. Its natural habitats are rivers, freshwater lakes, freshwater marshes, sandy shores, pastureland, and urban areas. It is threatened by habitat loss. About 78% of the population breeds in the Southland Region on the southern end of South Island, New Zealand, especially beside the Mataura, the Oreti, the Aparima and Waiau Rivers. On the North Island, breeding sites are typically sand-spits, shell banks, lake margins and river flats. It feeds on fish, terrestrial, freshwater and marine invertebrates and visits farmland and refuse tips.

Status

The black-billed gull has shown a marked decline in numbers since about 1980. A census in 1996 showed 48,000 nests which would equate to about 96,000 mature individuals. The bird faces threats from various predators that eat eggs and chicks. These include brown rats, weasels, hedgehogs and feral cats. Nesting colonies are disturbed by people and river modification through dredging or abstraction of gravel and water also impact on them. For these reasons, the IUCN has rated the species as being "Endangered".

Habitat

The black-billed gull is endemic to New Zealand. Its natural habitats are rivers, freshwater lakes, freshwater marshes, sandy shores, pastureland, and urban areas. It is threatened by habitat loss. About 78% of the population breeds in the Southland Region on the southern end of South Island, New Zealand, especially beside the Mataura, the Oreti, the Aparima and Waiau Rivers. On the North Island, breeding sites are typically sand-spits, shell banks, lake margins and river flats. It feeds on fish, terrestrial, freshwater and marine invertebrates and visits farmland and refuse tips.

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Status: Endangered
EX EW CR EN VU NT LC
Taxonomy
KingdomAnimalia
DivisionChordata
ClassAves
OrderCharadriiformes
FamilyLaridae
GenusChroicocephalus
SpeciesC. bulleri
Photographed in
New Zealand