Utah Winter Gulls

by Dennis Shirley

General Information  |  Gull Identification  |  Immature Gulls  |  Key to Adult Gulls  |  Species List  |

     Sabine's Gull
  (similar species)

Breeding Adult - black bill with yellow tip, dark hood, gray mantle
Photo by Jack Binch   ©Jack Binch

Juvenile - brown on back and upperwing coverts; the feathers have a fine, pale edging
by Milt Moody    ©Milton G. Moody

Juvenile - brown mantle, back of head and sides of neck; dark tip of tail,
black outer primaries form a narrowly triangular black wing patch as in adult
by Paul Higgins    ©Paul Higgins

First Winter - (seen rarely in North America) gray on head, neck and mantle,
still brownish on wings
by Paul Higgins   ©Paul Higgins

First Winter - the wing pattern with three triangular patches is present in all ages.
by Jack Binch   ©Jack Binch

Sabine's Gull

Similar Species
   Bonaparte's Gull - has white triangular patches on the wing tips and a black trailing edge on the primaries
   Juvenile Black-legged Kittiwake -  shows a narrow "M" pattern from above when flying; lacks juvenile Sabine's considerable gray-brown coloring on head and sides of breast; does not not show the solid triangular, patched wing pattern of the Sabine's
   Black-headed Gull (not seen in Utah) - has white triangular patch on wing tips similar to Bonaparte's.


Bonaparte's Gulls - have narrow,white triangular patch on wing tips
   Photo by Kendall Brown   ©Kendall W. Brown

2nd Year Black-legged Kittiwake -  has a yellow bill; looses the black "M" pattern
on the upperwing which is somewhat similar to the Sabine's

   Photo by Paul Higgins   ©Paul Higgins

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