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garbageband

Seaull ID?

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I saw this bird on Stellwagon Bank area yesterday. It looked different from gulls I've seen, especially the eyes. It was smaller, less aggressive and more cautious than other gulls. Is it just a typical young herring gull, or something else?

 

 

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you are correct, that is a Northern Fulmar. they are pelagic and really only come to shore to breed on cliffs in the north atlantic and the high arctic. they eat a lot of squid, and their populations are on the upswing on account of the fish refuse dumped by commercial fishing vessels.

 

these guys are in a family of birds called tubenoses, because their nostrils are long and tubular on top of their bill, along with albatrosses, petrels and shearwaters. tubenoses have special glands in their heads that help them remove salt from their blood, which would otherwise be toxic to the birds. the salt gets expelled from the tubes. :b40:

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