Verification of Unusual Sight Record
For Utah

Rec. # 2005-03

Common name:

Lesser Black-backed Gull

Scientific name: Larus fuscus
Date: 01-03-05
Time: 2:45 pm
Length of time observed: 15 minutes
Number: 1
Age: 1st Winter
Sex: n/a
Location: Bountiful Landfill
County: Davis
Latilong: n/a
Elevation: 4,500 ft
Distance to bird: 150 yards
Optical equipment: 20-50x50 Yukon Spotting Scope
Weather: Sunny and Cool
Light Conditions: good lighting
Detailed description of bird: A Medium sized young gull, with a dark speckled back, with a lighter head and chest. This bird had extremely black primaries and secondaires, with white edges. The bird had a fairly thick, all black bill, compared to the California Gulls nearby. The bird was too small to be a Herring Gull, and about the same size as a California. With many 1st winter California Gulls nearby it was an easy comparison.

The speckled back was very "checkered" black and white.
Song or call & method of delivery: n/a
Behavior: The bird was sitting with a flock of California, Ring-billed and Herring Gulls, preening and feeding.
Habitat: A city dump (not seen actually on the dump), and a freshwater pond
Similar species and how
were they eliminated:
California Gull: The bill was all black, instead of pink based, and the back was completely speckled, instead of the "dirty" grey of a California gull.

Herring Gull: this gull was much smaller than the Herring Gulls nearby, and had a much darker more checkerd back.
Previous experience with
this & similar species:
I have seen many LBBG on the East coast, and several along Lake Michigan the past 3 years.
References consulted: The Sibley Guide to Birds and "Gulls of North America, Europe and Asia" by Olsen and Larsson
Description from: From memory
Observer: Tim Avery
Observer's address: 1754 Garfield Avenue
Observer's e-mail address:
Other observers who independently identified this bird: Ken Behrens from Pennsylvania
Date prepared: 01-03-05    (General Public)
Additional material:  
Additional comments: