Presumed 2nd-calendar year Baltic Gull at Noordwijk (NL) – 20130622

A beautiful second-calendar year (presumed) Baltic Gull Larus fuscus fuscus was present today at the sand suppletion works at Noordwijk aan Zee, The Netherlands.

Presumed 2nd-calendar year Baltic Gull. Noordwijk, The Netherlands, 22 Jun 2013.

Presumed 2nd-calendar year Baltic Gull. Noordwijk aan Zee, The Netherlands, 22 Jun 2013.

Presumed 2nd-calendar year Baltic Gull. Noordwijk aan Zee, The Netherlands, 22 Jun 2013.

Presumed 2nd-calendar year Baltic Gull. Noordwijk aan Zee, The Netherlands, 22 Jun 2013.

Presumed 2nd-calendar year Baltic Gull. Noordwijk aan Zee, The Netherlands, 22 Jun 2013.

Presumed 2nd-calendar year Baltic Gull. Noordwijk aan Zee, The Netherlands, 22 Jun 2013.

Presumed 2nd-calendar year Baltic Gull. Noordwijk aan Zee, The Netherlands, 22 Jun 2013.

Presumed 2nd-calendar year Baltic Gull. Noordwijk aan Zee, The Netherlands, 22 Jun 2013.

Presumed 2nd-calendar year Baltic Gull. Noordwijk aan Zee, The Netherlands, 22 Jun 2013.

Presumed 2nd-calendar year Baltic Gull (center, bottom) among Lesser Black-backed Gulls and Herring Gulls. Noordwijk aan Zee, The Netherlands, 22 Jun 2013.

Presumed 2nd-calendar year Baltic Gull. Noordwijk aan Zee, The Netherlands, 22 Jun 2013.

Presumed 2nd-calendar year Baltic Gull. Noordwijk aan Zee, The Netherlands, 22 Jun 2013.

Why presumed?

Baltic Gulls are a rare species and can officially only be determined when a proven background is available (meaning: it has to be fitted a ring and has to have a known background). However, because of their advanced moult sequence compared with Scandinavian Lesser Black-backed Gulls Larus fuscus intermedius and Western Lesser Black-backed Gulls Larus fuscus graellsii, Baltic Gulls of a certain age and during a certain time of the year can be determined down to sub-species with a high degree of certainty.

This is certainly true for second-calendar year Baltic Gulls in the month of June. The individual in the photos shows a distinctive yellow bill and yellow coloration in the legs, but this also occurs in similarly aged graellsii and intermedius. What sets it apart though as a pretty much definite Baltic gull are the fully replaced wing coverts, secondaries, primaries and tail feathers.

References

Field identification criteria for second calendar-year Baltic Gull

Second-calendar year Baltic Gull in June (Gull Research)

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