Great Black-backed Gull

General description.

The "Great Black-backed Gull's" bill is yellow, his legs, pinkish. This coastal bird is ever in the presence of the Herring Gull; they even nest together in mixed colonies. Besides ocean beaches, this gull inhabits estuaries and lagoons, as well as refuse dumps.

Juvenile appearance.

The young Black-backed is mottled with brown and is paler on the head and breast. His bill is dark, and he has a black tipped tail.

Breeding habits.

This gull breeds from Labrador south to the Carolinas, and also the Great Lakes.

Calls or song.

The "Great Black-backed Gull's", "keeow" is similar to that of the Herring Gull, but more gutteral.

Population and distribution.

This aggressive gull preys on anything smaller than itself, including plovers, small ducks, petrels, fish, shellfish, as well as the eggs and babies of other gulls. A real "snow bird", the Great Black-backed Gull" heads to south Florida in winter.

Nesting habits.

The female "Black-backed Gull" lays three olive eggs, splotched with dark brown, in a nest lined with grass in a depression in the sand.

Similar birds:

Herring Gull Photo Herring Gull
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