Herring Gull- Zilvermeeuw (argentatus & argenteus)

(last update: 8-2-2007)


Herring Gull plumages:

hg 1cy July
hg 1cy August
hg 1cy September
hg 1cy October
hg 1cy November
hg 1cy December

hg 2cy January
hg 2cy February
hg 2cy March
hg 2cy April
hg 2cy May
hg 2cy June
hg 2cy July
hg 2cy August
hg 2cy September
hg 2cy October
hg 2cy November
hg 2cy December

hg 3cy January
hg 3cy February
hg 3cy March
hg 3cy April
hg 3cy May
hg 3cy June
hg 3cy July
hg 3cy August
hg 3cy September
hg 3cy October
hg 3cy November
hg 3cy December

hg sub-ad January
hg sub-ad February
hg sub-ad March
hg sub-ad April
hg sub-ad May
hg sub-ad June
hg sub-ad July
hg sub-ad August
hg sub-ad September
hg sub-ad October
hg sub-ad November
hg sub-ad December

hg ad January
hg ad February
hg ad March
hg ad April
hg ad May
hg ad June
hg ad July
hg ad August
hg ad September
hg ad October
hg ad November
hg ad December

(2 images) Herring Gull 3cy (argentatus), January 04 2002, Le Portel / Boulogne-sur-Mer, France (50.42N,1.34E).

A 3cy argentatus, which is very coarsely marked and contrastingly patterned. The new scapulars are not plain adult-like grey as in most argenteus, but the scapular region are moulted to third generation feathers which strongly resemble the second generation feathers. Consequently, 3cy argentatus may look very delayed in their moult, compared to argenteus in mixed groups and they can sometimes be mistaken for 2cy birds.
However, note the primaries with rounded tips, clearly second generation feathers and unlike the pointed juvenile remiges. Looking closer, P10 shows a faint mirror, a feature definitely lacking in juvenile feathers. Second generation primaries with a mirror on P10 can be found in quite some argentatus (and is very rare in argenteus).

This individual has replaced very few wing-coverts in the partial autumn moult as 2cy bird: greater coverts #2-3 and probably a single lower lesser covert have been replaced. The new feathers show a buffish hue on the pale parts and have fresh fringes and tips.