Image 28 of 5449
Mediterranean Gull - Larus melanocephalus - with Black-headed Gulls. L 36-38cm. Similar to Black-headed but has stouter bill; adult has uniformly pale wings. Sexes are similar. Adult in summer has pale grey back and wing coverts, and white flight feathers. Note black hood and white ‘eyelids’; bill is mainly red, with yellow tip and black sub-terminal band. Legs are deep red. In winter, loses dark hood; whitish head has menacing look created by dark smudges. Juvenile has grey-brown upperparts with pale margins to back feathers. Note darkish flush on breast. Bill and legs are dark; tail has dark terminal band. 1st winter bird is similar to juvenile but with plain grey back and dark smudges on head. Adult plumage is acquired by 3rd winter. 2nd year bird resembles adult (at respective times of year) but with variable black in wingtips. Voice Utters cow-cow-cow call. Status Very locally common, usually with Black-headeds. Small numbers nest in S England. More widespread outside breeding season.