Lesser Black-backed Gull

Larus fuscus

The Lesser Black-backed Gull is a large gull that breeds on the Atlantic coasts of Europe. It is migratory, wintering from the British Isles south to West Africa. It is a regular winter visitor to the east coast of North America, probably from the breeding population in Iceland.
Lesser black-backed gull  (Larus fuscus)  gaviota sombría (Larus fuscus)  Geotagged,Larus fuscus,Lesser Black-backed Gull,Spain,Winter

Appearance

They are smaller than the Herring Gull. The taxonomy of the Herring Gull / Lesser Black-backed Gull complex is very complicated; different authorities recognise between two and eight species. This group has a ring distribution around the northern hemisphere.

Differences between adjacent forms in this ring are fairly small, but by the time the circuit is completed, the end members, Herring Gull and Lesser Black-backed Gull, are clearly different species. The Lesser Black-backed Gull measures 51–64 cm, 124–150 cm across the wings and weighs 452–1,100 g, with the nominate race averaging slightly smaller than the other two subspecies. Males, at average weight of 824 g, are slightly larger than females, at an average of 708 g.

Among standard measurements, the wing chord is 38.3 to 45 c , the bill is 4.2 to 5.8 cm and the tarsus is 5.2 to 6.9 cm. A confusable species in Europe is Great Black-backed Gull. The Lesser is a much smaller bird, with slimmer build, yellow rather than pinkish legs, and smaller white "mirrors" at the wing tips. The adults have black or dark grey wings and back. The bill is yellow with a red spot which young peck at, inducing feeding. The head is greyer in winter, unlike Great Black-backed.

Young birds have scaly black-brown upperparts and a neat wing pattern. They take four years to reach maturity. Identification from juvenile Herring Gulls is most readily done by the more solidly dark tertial feathers.

The call is a "laughing" cry like that of the Herring Gull , but with a markedly deeper pitch.
Lesser Black-backed Gull  Geotagged,Larus fuscus,Lesser Black-backed Gull,The Netherlands

Naming

There are three races:
⤷ ''Larus fuscus fuscus'' – Baltic Sea, eastern Scandinavia. Mantle jet black.
⤷ ''Larus fuscus intermedius'' – Denmark, Netherlands, Norway. Mantle sooty black.
⤷ ''Larus fuscus graellsii'' – British Isles, Iceland, northern France. Mantle dark grey.
Lesser black-backed gull - Larus fuscus graellsii Today on the lake of Botunets near Sofia - Larus fuscus graellsii - the leftmost bird. Not very often observation of this species in Bulgaria and a new species for me. First experiments with Digiscoping. Distant shot. The photo was taken with an Olympus EM-1 MarkIII, the body directly attached to the Kowa TSN-883 eyepiece attachment, x35. It's a great game, with lots of pictures for the trash, but it's worth it. Well, the photo is not for an exhibition, but it seems pretty good for documenting the observation. Animal,Animalia,Aves,Bird,Botunets lake,Bulgaria,Charadriiformes,Chordata,Digiscoping,Europe,Geotagged,Laridae,Larus fuscus,Larus fuscus graellsii,Lesser Black-backed Gull,Lesser black-backed gull,Sofia,Wildlife,Winter

Distribution

Ireland: Copeland Bird Observatory, Co. Down.

England: Co. Durham.
Lesser Back-Black Gull  Geotagged,Larus fuscus,Lesser Black-backed Gull,South Africa,Summer,Umkomaas

Food

They are omnivores like most ''Larus'' gulls, and they will eat fish, insects, crustaceans, worms, starfish, molluscs, seeds, berries, small mammals, eggs, small birds, chicks, scraps, offal, and carrion.

References:

Some text fragments are auto parsed from Wikipedia.

Status: Least concern
EX EW CR EN VU NT LC
Taxonomy
KingdomAnimalia
DivisionChordata
ClassAves
OrderCharadriiformes
FamilyLaridae
GenusLarus
SpeciesL. fuscus