Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)

(last update: October 12, 2011)

Coordinators:
Jean-Michel Sauvage (France)
Morten Helberg (Norway)
Nils Helge Lorentzen (Norway)
Mars Muusse (Netherlands)

Great Black-backed Gull adult October

On this page you'll find the data reproduced from the Canadian Atlas of Bird Banding regarding Larus marinus.

Canadian Atlas of Bird Banding

Volume 2: Seabirds, 1921–1995. (Gaston et al., 2008)

Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) 47.0 / Date Modified: 2012-04-02

Banding Location

Encounter Location

Band Number

Number of
encounters

Latitude

Longitude

Latitude

Longitude

42.50
70.50
47.33
53.50
90700187
2
44.83
62.33
48.50
58.50
54728515
18
45.00
64.17
40.50
73.83
114716162
6
45.17
66.00
34.67
90.00
86790125
1
45.17
66.00
46.17
64.50
60777259
42
45.67
64.50
47.67
64.83
146748144
9
46.00
60.67
48.67
53.00
52726815
1
46.00
62.50
37.83
75.67
92734867
4
47.33
54.17
35.33
75.50
93701182
3
47.33
54.17
44.50
66.83
93701150
4
47.33
54.17
47.50
52.67
93701286
2
47.33
54.17
49.50
54.67
93701017
8
47.50
52.83
47.50
59.00
58769289
4
47.50
52.83
48.67
58.83
58769271
1
47.67
69.67
32.83
79.83
51738329
11
47.67
69.67
46.83
71.00
61736919
72
48.00
69.17
44.67
75.33
66784588
35
48.00
69.17
48.67
58.67
62799754
8
48.00
69.17
51.50
55.33
62799894
1
48.17
69.00
48.83
67.50
54714420
26
50.17
59.50
49.50
54.17
3619238
14
50.17
59.67
43.67
66.00
418863
3
50.17
60.17
47.00
55.00
418874
4
50.17
60.17
51.33
56.83
334158
7
50.17
60.50
47.50
61.67
5584
14
51.00
55.00
50.00
56.00
418786
2
52.00
55.67
41.17
71.50
38713815
1
52.00
55.67
47.50
58.83
38713842
2

Great Black-backed Gulls breed along the Atlantic coast from northern Labrador south to New York and uncommonly on the Great Lakes. They winter mainly on the east coast from the Strait of Belle Isle southward and in small numbers on the St. Lawrence River and the Great Lakes (Good 1998).

Banding effort has been concentrated at colonies in the Gulf of St. Lawrence; almost all the gulls banded have been chicks. Most encounters reported involved dead birds (95%); of these, 74 were shot. Some recovery information on birds banded at Manawagonish Island, New Brunswick, was given by Astle and McAlpine (1985).

Movements were generally along the eastern seaboard, from Newfoundland south to the Carolinas (records 1–6, see table below). There have been nine encounters of Quebec-banded birds in Ontario (records 7 and 8) and one from New Brunswick (record 9). In addition, there have been 28 encounters in Canada of birds banded in Maine (New Brunswick 6, Nova Scotia 14, Quebec 4, Newfoundland and Labrador 2, and Ontario 2 [record 10]) and 7 from Massachusetts (Newfoundland and Labrador 1 [record 11], Nova Scotia 4, Prince Edward Island 1, and Quebec 1). Patterns of encounters did not differ greatly between the first and subsequent years after banding, although the sample of older birds was small. Mean encounter distances were greatest in winter (January–March, approximately 750 km) and least in summer (July–September, 198 km). The most distant encounter of a Canadian-banded bird (2411 km) was of a bird banded on Newfoundland and found in North Carolina (record 2).

The distribution of encounters suggests that movements follow the coastline, although a gull banded as a local near Cape Cod, Massachusetts, was recovered at the western end of Lake Ontario less than 1 month later, suggesting an overland route (record 10). The recovery of one bird inland in northern Mississippi (record 12) would constitute an interesting record if authentic. The species has not been recorded away from the coast in Mississippi, although there are a number of records in Tennessee (T. Schiefer and G.D. Jackson, pers. commun.). Unfortunately, the circumstances of this recovery do not preclude the possibility of a misread band number. The same applies to the apparent trapping of a bird banded in Massachusetts in 1970 and retrapped at Churchill, Manitoba, in 1977: the species is only an accidental vagrant at Churchill, where many geese, carrying a band of the same size, are trapped.

Great Black-backed Gulls appear to be among the longest-lived of North American birds. Twenty-six encounters were of birds more than 10 years old at death. The longevity record for this species in North America was 23 years (record 8, Clapp et al. 1982), but has since been surpassed by a Quebec bird, encountered only 133 km from where it was banded, at 27 years and 4 months (record 13).

Encounter records: Great Black-backed Gull

Band Number

Sex

Distance

Duration

Age

Banding Location

Encounter Location

0517-38205 U 945 km S66°W 5 mo. L 06/07/1952: Strawberry Island, QC (47°40'N 69°40'W) 22/12/1952: Cootes Paradise Marsh, ON (43°10'N 79°50'W)
0036-21547 U 187 km N72°W 33 yr. 9 mo. L 24/07/1931: Yarmouth, NS (43°50'N 66°0'W) ??/04/1964: Franklin, ME (44°0'N 68°10'W)
0517-38331 U 1854 km S34°W 5 mo. L 06/07/1952: Big Pilgrim Island, QC (47°40'N 69°40'W) 31/12/1952: Charleston Heights, SC (32°50'N 79°50'W)
0577-23208 U 1457 km S28°W 5 mo. L 01/07/1959: Big Pilgrim Island, QC (47°40'N 69°40'W) 28/12/1959: Swan Quarter, NC (35°20'N 76°20'W)
0517-38331 U 870 km S67°W 23 yr. 2 mo. L 06/07/1952: Gull Rock Island, QC (47°40'N 69°40'W) 26/09/1975: Don Mills, ON (43°40'N 79°20'W)
0547-14420 U 133 km N56°E 27 yr. 4 mo. L 03/07/1955: near St. Simon, QC (48°10'N 69°0'W) 07/11/1982: Matane, QC (48°50'N 67°30'W)
0587-69411 M 2411 km S65°W 2 yr. 8 mo. ASY 19/07/1984: near St. John's, NL (47°10'N 52°40'W) ??/03/1987: near C. Hatteras, NC (35°0'N 76°40'W)
0757-98850 U 747 km N83°W 19 dy. L 22/06/1965: near Portsmouth, ME (42°50'N 70°30'W) 11/07/1965: near Oakville, ON (43°20'N 79°40'W)
0907-00187 U 1440 km N62°E 1 yr. 1 mo. AHY 13/07/1968: near Cape Cod, MA (42°30'N 70°30'W) ??/08/1969: Markland, NL (47°20'N 53°30'W)
0867-90150 U 1323 km S44°W 1 yr. 3 mo. L 16/07/1973: Lancaster, NB (45°10'N 66°0'W) 14/10/1974: Duck Island, NC (35°40'N 75°30'W)
0697-43540 U 924 km S85°W 9 mo. L 12/07/1974: Manawagonish Island, NB (45°10'N 66°0'W) 14/04/1975: Presqu'île, ON (43°50'N 77°30'W)
0867-90125 U 2346 km S69°W 6 mo. L 16/07/1973: Manawagonish Island, NB (45°10'N 66°0'W) 01/01/1974: Arkabutla Dam, MS (34°0'N90°0'W)
0937-00796 U 1334 km S75°W 11 mo. L 19/07/1974: Red Island, Placentia Bay, NL (47°20'N 54°10'W) 22/06/1975: Arundel, ME (43°20'N 70°20'W)

Summary of banding statistics: Great Black-backed Gull

Age at banding

 

Hatch Year

After Hatch Year

Any Age

No. of Canadian bandings (1955-1995) 0 0 8001
No. encountered per 1000 banded (1955-1995) 0 0 41
Total no. encountered (1921-1995) 478 4 531
No. encountered from foreign bandings 36 2 39
Maximum period from banding to encounter (mo.) 328 32 328
No. of Canadian-banded birds moving > 0 km 359 2 384
Mean movement > 0 km of Canadian-banded birds 365 1211 365
Maximum movement from all encounters (km) 2346 2411 2411
% recovered (encountered dead) 94 100 95
% direct recoveries 46 0 46
% encountered during banding operations 1 0 1

Banding effort: Great Black-backed Gull

Region

Total Banded

New Brunswick 2641
Newfoundland and Labrador 1541
Nova Scotia 1478
Ontario 19
Prince Edward Island 359
Quebec 1970
Total 8008

 

jd28wk191004b.jpg (115232 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) JD28 7cy: October 2004 & 2010, Westkapelle, the Netherlands (51.33 N - 03.25 E).
Primary p7 fully grown.

gbbgGreat Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) 8cy JD34 October 14 2006, Boulogne sur Mer, France (50.44 N - 01.35 E). Picture Jean-Michel Sauvage.

gbbgGreat Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) 12cy JL03 October 19 2009, Boulogne sur Mer, France (50.44 N - 01.35 E). Picture Jean-Michel Sauvage.

5583jr88.jpg (51930 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) JR88: October 05 2002, Le Portel - Boulogne sur Mer, France (50.42 N - 01.34 E).
A Scandinavian adult ringed JR88. P6 is fully grown P10 is still old.

gbbgGreat Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) J5RP April 2008, December 2011 & October 2012, Boulogne sur Mer, France (50.44 N - 01.35 E). Picture Jean-Michel Sauvage.
gbbgGreat Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) 5cy J8P3 October 02 2006, Boulogne sur Mer, France (50.44 N - 01.35 E). Picture Jean-Michel Sauvage.
8471j52c.jpg (85052 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) 7cy J9K5 October 26 2008, Boulogne sur Mer, France (50.44 N - 01.35 E). Picture Jean-Michel Sauvage.
gbbgGreat Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) 10+cy JGU5 October 24 2006, Boulogne sur Mer, France (50.44 N - 01.35 E). Picture Jean-Michel Sauvage.

gbbgGreat Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) 10+cy JGV2 October 21 2006, Boulogne sur Mer, France (50.44 N - 01.35 E). Picture Jean-Michel Sauvage.

gbbgGreat Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) 6cy JH0R October 01 2010, Boulogne sur Mer, France (50.44 N - 01.35 E). Picture Jean-Michel Sauvage.

1598.jpg (74227 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) JH3C 4cy & 10cy, September 2007 & October 2013, Boulogne sur Mer, France (50.44 N - 01.35 E). Picture Jean-Michel Sauvage.

gbbgGreat Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) 6cy JM06 October 29-30 2011, Boulogne sur Mer, France (50.44 N - 01.35 E). Picture Jean-Michel Sauvage.

gbbgGreat Black-backed Gull (marinus) 5cy JA175 October 31 2012, Boulogne-sur-Mer, NW France. Picture: Jean-Michel Sauvage.
gbbgGreat Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) 5cy JA686 October 01 2012, Westkapelle, the Netherlands.

5500a216331.jpg (65228 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) A - 216331 October 05 2002, Boulogne sur Mer, France (50.42 N - 01.34 E).
P7 is fully grown. All outer primaries have been shed.

5825stavangergbbg.jpg (55334 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus)16cy NOS 354288 October 18 2002, Moustafabaai - Maasvlakte, the Netherlands.
P7 fully grown and P8 is at the same length, no old primaries left.

5825stavangergbbg.jpg (55334 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (marinus) 25cy NOS 354859 October 29 & November 01 2012, Boulogne-sur-Mer, NW France. Picture: Jean-Michel Sauvage.

5825stavangergbbg.jpg (55334 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (L. marinus) NOS 367624 October 02 2004, IJmuiden, the Netherlands. Picture: Ruud Altenburg.

gbbgGreat Black-backed Gull (marinus) 13cy NOS 392865 October 03 2012, Boulogne-sur-Mer, NW France. Picture: Jean-Michel Sauvage.
gbbgGreat Black-backed Gull (marinus) adult NOS 30x391 October 03 2012, Boulogne-sur-Mer, NW France. Picture: Jean-Michel Sauvage.

7095jp36.jpg (66909 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) ad NOO OA03218 October 22 2004 Westkapelle, the Netherlands.

7680.jpg (49959 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) SVS 9159239 5-6cy, March 2012-December 2013, Boulogne-sur-Mer, France. Picture Jean-Michel Sauvage.
7095jp36.jpg (66909 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) adult BTO E08641 October 08 2010, Boulogne / Mer, France. Picture Jean Michel Sauvage.
re703wk281004.jpg (129485 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (L. marinus) 9cy E703 October 30 2009, Westkapelle, the Netherlands (51.33N-03.25E).
8471j52c.jpg (85052 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) 5cy NLA 6038628 October 16 2011, IJmuiden, the Netherlands. Picture: M v Kleinwee.
8471j52c.jpg (85052 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) 0R5 adult, October 16 2011, Minet’s Point - Ontario, Canada. Picture: Kelly Roussy.
8471j52c.jpg (85052 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) 4K9 adult, October 10 2010, Sandy Point State Park. Picture: Phil Brown.
8471j52c.jpg (85052 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) -- adult, September - October 2011, November 2013, Boulogne sur Mer, France (50.44 N - 01.35 E). Picture Jean-Michel Sauvage.
7095jp36.jpg (66909 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (L. marinus) adult, October 11 2011, Scheveningen, the Netherlands.
7095jp36.jpg (66909 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (L. marinus) adult, October 11 2011, Scheveningen, the Netherlands.
7095jp36.jpg (66909 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (L. marinus) adult, October 11 2011, Scheveningen, the Netherlands.
7095jp36.jpg (66909 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (L. marinus) adult, October 11 2011, Scheveningen, the Netherlands.
7095jp36.jpg (66909 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (L. marinus) adult, October 11 2011, Scheveningen, the Netherlands.
7095jp36.jpg (66909 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (L. marinus) adult, October 11 2011, Scheveningen, the Netherlands.
7095jp36.jpg (66909 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (L. marinus) adult, October 11 2011, Scheveningen, the Netherlands.
7095jp36.jpg (66909 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (L. marinus) adult, October 11 2011, Scheveningen, the Netherlands.

6863.jpg (76757 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) adult: October 01 2001, Le Portel - Boulogne sur Mer, France (50.42 N - 01.34 E).
The tip of primary P5 equals the tip of the fully grown P4. Outer primaries P8-P10 still have to be shed.

6864.jpg (66048 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) adult: October 01 2001, Le Portel - Boulogne sur Mer, France (50.42 N - 01.34 E).
The tip of primary P5 equals the tip of P3 while P4 is fully grown. Note the missing greater coverts, exposing the secondaries underneath.

9481gbbgad.jpg (64156 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) adult: October 05 2003, IJmuiden, the Netherlands (52.27 N - 04.33 E).
Primary P6 fully grown and P10 still old. Greater coverts and tertials fresh.

9507gbbgad.jpg (76411 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) adult: October 05 2003, IJmuiden, the Netherlands (52.27 N - 04.33 E).
Primary P6 fully grown and P10 still old. Greater coverts and tertials fresh.

5647gbbgad.jpg (44397 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) adult: October 11 2002, IJmuiden, the Netherlands (52.27 N - 04.33 E).
P7 fully grown, no old primaries left.

9877gbbgad.jpg (72223 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) adult: October 20 2003, IJmuiden, the Netherlands (52.27 N - 04.33 E).
P6 fully grown, P9-P10 still old primaries.

9889gbbgad.jpg (48373 bytes)Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) adult: October 20 2003, IJmuiden, the Netherlands (52.27 N - 04.33 E).
P7 fully grown, no old primaries left.