Grey silver gull?

To: "michael norris" <>, "birding-aus" <>
Subject: Grey silver gull?
From: "Mike Carter" <>
Date: Sun, 21 Jun 2009 09:47:13 +1000
I know of two other reports of grey Silver Gulls in Port Phillip Bay recently and have seen photos. One was at the WTP and one at Altona on the western side of the Bay. We believe it is the result of staining, perhaps the birds bathing in polluted water, even acid, as feathers wear easily. We've had a spate of reports periodically over at least the last 40 years.

Mike Carter
30 Canadian Bay Road
Mount Eliza  VIC 3930
Tel  (03) 9787 7136

From: "michael norris" <>
Sent: Wednesday, June 17, 2009 10:08 PM

I've been sent a photo of an apparent Silver Gull - but it is almost all

Slightly darker grey than the upperparts of close-by SGs with the same bill, leg and eye ring colour. The grey is increasingly dark towards the base of
the bill.  Black primaries with white "mirrors" as normal SGs and touch of
white on upper side of tail (and some secondaries?)

Individual feathers and tracts more apparent than in the other gulls,
possibly because of slightly darker margins to the grey feathers or the
feathers being more rounded (the photographer said it looked almost downy).

I assume it was on the eastern shore of Port Phillip Bay, Melbourne.  Any
comments please.

Michael Norris


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