Candidate Heuglin's Gull L heuglini
1-4: © Ruud Altenburg, 04-06-06; 5: © Arnoud van den Berg, 04-06-06. Amsterdam, Netherlands.
This bird is very similar to Caspian Gull (although not as close as this presumed Heuglin's Gull), but note the rather fresh looking juvenile greater coverts lacking (the indication of) pale tips, rather dark grey new scapulars, a broad tail bar, a rather dark underwing with finely barred axillaries, a broad wing base and relatively late moult (only P1-2 missing; P6 in the right wing is damaged). The underwing is dark and contrasts strongly with the almost pure white underparts. Note the obvious pale inner webs to the inner primaries. The juvenile feathers are in a rather well-preserved; the scapulars show a mix of anchor-type feathers and plain pale grey and pale brown feathers. For more pictures and information about this bird, please see Ruud Altenburg's site.
The previous candidate showed similarities to Caspian Gull, but in this individual the resemblance is much closer. The question of course is exactly how extreme the variation in Lesser Black-backed Gulls can be and how close they may appear to Caspian Gull or Caspian Gull-like Heuglin's Gull. If you have photographs of a ringed 2cy Lesser Black-backed Gull similar to this individual, please contact the authors.