Verification of Unusual Sight Record
For Utah

Rec. # 2009-21

Common name:

Little Gull

Scientific name: Larus minutus
Date: 07 November 2009
Time: 8:15 AM
Length of time observed: several hours
Number: 1
Age: adult
Sex:  ?
Location: Antelope Island Causeway near marina bridge
Distance to bird: 100 - 150 feet
Optical equipment: Swarovski 10x42 binoculars - ?Swarovski 80mm spoting scope
Weather: clear
Light Conditions: very good
Description:        Size of bird: small gull
(Description:)       Basic Shape: gull
(Description:)  Overall Pattern: basic plumage
(Description:)            Bill Type: short
Field Marks and
Identifying Characteristics:
very small gull - light gray back and wings - black under wings - round wing tips - reddish legs - dark crown - dark spot behind eye - wing tips while sitting on water were white

please see photos
Song or call & method of delivery: none
Behavior: actively feeding in lake - flying in near shore and drifting out and flying back several times each hour
Habitat: lake
Similar species and how
were they eliminated:
It was with a couple of hundred Bonaparte's Gulls. They are a little bigger, but you have to see them next to each other to tell that. The wing tips on Bonaparte's Gulls are black and they don't have as much of a dark cap.
Previous experience with
this & similar species:
none, but lots with Bonaparte's Gulls
References consulted: Sibley Guide to birds - Peterson
Description from: From memory
Observer: Jack Binch
Observer's address: 1564 Crest Circle - Sandy, Utah - 84093
Observer's e-mail address:
Other observers who independently identified this bird: Tim Avery - Larene Wyss - many others
Date prepared: 11 Nov. 2009
Additional material: Photos