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Heuglin's Gull - Larus heuglini

Heuglin's Gull, adult (left) and Caspian Gull, 3rd year (right): Ashdod Rubbish Tip, Israel 21st March 2012.

Note here the differences in structure between the two birds though this could also be accounted for if the Caspian Gull is a male, it was very large, and the Heuglin's Gull is a female or small male.

- the bill shape and colouration
- head shape
- fuller chest of the Caspian Gull
- extent of hind neck streaking
- upper-part colouration and tone
- legs legs and colour.
Heuglin's Gull, adult : Ashdod Rubbish Tip, Israel 21st March 2012.

The upper-parts are dark, similar to Lesser Black-backed Gull, graellsii, but tending to lack the 'bluish' quality. Certainly darker than Caspian, Yellow-legged and Steppe Gull.

This bird has a fairly dark looking eye, sturdy bright coloured bill and bright legs.

The primaries show small white tips and a mirror, on the underside, of P10.

A fairly small bird so presumably a female.
Heuglin's Gull, adult : Ashdod Rubbish Tip, Israel 21st March 2012.
A rather pale eyed bird resembling Yellow-legged Gull, michahellis, however note the darker upper-parts, well spaced white tips to P10-P6 and rounded mirror to the under-side of P10.
Heuglin's Gull, adult (front), Caspian Gull, first-winter (middle) and Armenian Gull, first-year (rear) : Ashdod Rubbish Tip, Israel 21st March 2012.

The Heuglin's Gull is the same as in the previous image. Note the structural differences to the Armenian Gull at the back and that birds short blunt tipped bill.
Heuglin's Gull, adult (left) with Baltic Gulls: Ashdod, Israel 21st March 2012.

Heuglin's Gull, adult (right), Armenian Gull, adult (left) andTirat Zevi Fish Ponds, Bet Shean Valley, Israel 23rd March 2012.

In the shot the darker upper-parts of the Heuglin's Gull compared to the Armenian Gull, itself slightly darker than Yellow-legged Gull, are obvious. The Heuglin's Gull shows contrast with the black primaries which on the other dark back gull of the region, Baltic Gull, shows no contrast.
Heuglin's Gull, adults Ashdod Rubbish Tip, Israel 21st March 2012

Series of in flight images showing the wing tip pattern.

The first  two images shows a rounded mirror to P10 only with small white tips to P10-P7 with larger white tips on the inner primaries.

On the underwing note the extent to which the black extends along the primaries towards the Primary Coverts. On P10 the black reaches the coverts whilst on P9 this is about 90% of the length of the feather and on P8 about 80%. This results in a large extent of black on the outer wing.

P4 shows an unbroken dark subterminal band and P5 has an extensive black band which adds to the appearance of extensive black in the wing tip.
Heuglin's Gull, adults Ashdod Rubbish Tip, Israel 21st March 2012

Following on from the first image this shows the single white mirror to P10, totally lacking any mirror on P9.

The extensive black in the outer primaries is apparent here, significantly extending along the outer primaries, becoming more diffuse towards the bases. P7 to P5 shows perhaps darker black than the outer primaries, extending up along the outer web with narrow inner moons or crescents between the black and grey on P6 and P5.

P4's band is clearly broader on the outer web and not much more than a crescent on the inner. There is also a dark 'ghost' on P3.

Just visible here also is the pale grey pencil line streaking the hind-neck.
Heuglin's Gull, adults Ashdod Rubbish Tip, Israel 21st March 2012

Next two images relate to the same individual.

As in the previous birds the black on the outer primaries extends well along the primaries to the primary coverts, lacking paler inner webs to P10-P8. A grey tongue appears on the inner webs to P7 and P6 whilst P5 shows a broad black band. P4 has a broken band on both wings shown as dark spots on the inner and outer webs.

In this bird there is a small white mirror to P9, outer web only whilst the white tips to P9 and especially P9 are very small.

The white trailing edge is broadest across the central secondaries and narrows from the inner primaries outwards.