Not really relevant to those who follow this blog for South East Kent bird news and photos but I couldn’t help putting it together as it focuses on one of my favourite Gull species. I hope its enjoyable and useful to those who appreciate the big old ugly larids.
I don’t often see American Herrings up close on these regular work trips to Miami in late November but this visit I did and a nice range too with both unworn northern types and bleached worn scruffier birds too. Enjoy!
Some nice dumpy postures and quite a recognisable facial expression to some of these. A range of the scapular and greater covert patterns shown by 1st winter AHG.
Retrices and Upper tail coverts; Tails all black or with limited white patterning in outer 3/4 feathers at most. The brown bars thicker than the white in the upper tail coverts.
Below, a photo showing nice smooth brown axilleires, dark belly and densely barred under and upper tail coverts.
Under tail coverts; all important for AHG identification, similar rule to the uppers although the longest under tail coverts are mostly brown with small white lozenges or jagged triangular shapes out of them.
Miami is a brilliant place to see birds and if gulls isnt your thing you can see warblers basically everywhere, see some previous posts for more on that and here a few warbler photos from this year too.