09 April 2013

Tricky Gulls – Al Khobar

A couple of tricky gulls, identification wise, were seen at Al Khobar recently. One I have already posted that looked like a Caspian Gull but was most probably a Steppe Gull. A second bird is shown here – it is difficult to work out if this gull is a Heuglin’s Gull Larus heuglini or a Steppe Gull Larus barabensis. The bird is not quite in adult plumage and has fleshy coloured legs as well as a very large bill, darkish upper-parts colouration but appears to have well grown primaries. I have included a couple of photos of the two species of gull this may be to compare with, although the two pictures show birds in adult plumage rather than sub-adult as the tricky bird. As always in birding it is best to leave some birds as unidentified rather than put a name to it which may be wrong.

Heuglin's or Steppe Gull - sub adult
Heuglin's Gull

Steppe Gull