Larus armenicus

(last update: 7-9-2010)

Amir Ben Dov (Israel)
Mars Muusse (Netherlands)


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armenicus info
armenicus iris speckling

Larus armenicus

Filchagov, A.V. (1993): The Armenian Gull in Armenia. British Birds 86: 550-560.

Breeding biology and behaviour

A characteristic feature of the Lake Sevan Armenian Gulls was that they regularly held their wings in a somewhat lowered, relaxed position (plates 213, 214 & 215). In other gulls of the complex, such a position is observed mainly in agonistic situations, or when the air temperature is higher. At Sevan, it was the usual position even in obviously calm situations without any social contacts, and at any time in the day, including the cool morning and evening hours.

Structure, plumage and bare-part variations

All breeding birds had yellow to bright yellow legs and a red or orange-red orbital ring. Iris colour varied from dark brown to pale yellowish: on many individuals (at least six out of 44, from photographs) the iris was pale enough to contrast with the pupil, and in rare cases had no dark pigment.

215. Armenian Gull Larus (argentatus) armenicus showing variability of intensity of iris colour
(from pale yellow to dark brown), and loosly held wings, Armenia, June 1990 (A.V. Filchagov)

[Unfortunately, all the negatives of A. V. Filchagov’s photographs taken during his trip to Armenia were stolen in a robbery in Paris. The plates accompanying this paper have, therefore, been taken from the only remaining (rough) prints which, fortunately, had been sent to British Birds with the first draft of this paper. EDS]