Black-tailed Gull
Larus crassirostris
This apparent third-winter (or adult?) Black-tailed Gull (Larus crassirostris) was at the Brownsville landfill, Cameron Co., Texas from 11-13 February 1999, and again in March. This bird represented the 1st Texas record. The photos here were taken by Greg Lasley on 12 February with a Canon EOS 1N and EF 300 mm F2.8L lens with a 2X extender on Fuji Sensia 100. The camera and lens were mounted on a tripod. The photos immediately below are blown up from the photo at right. Note the position of the red on the bill, the pale iris, and the tiny white tips to several of the primaries. See below for other shots. Willie Sekula was standing next to me when this bird was photographed. For a look at Willie's photos taken at the same time visit Martin Reid's web site here. This bird was initially discovered by: Jeanne Skelly from Rochester, NY, Sharon Skelly also from Rochester, Dean DiTommaso from Portland, Maine (originally from Buffalo, NY), Betsy Potter from Niagara Falls, NY, and Willie D'Anna also from Niagara Falls. Congratulations to all of them for the discovery!
This shot is of the Black-tailed Gull taking flight. Note the black tail band surrounded by white. Also note the contrast between the black of the tail band and the dark gray of the mantle. A first-winter Ring-billed Gull is taking off behind the Black-tailed Gull.