Subject: Slaty-backed Gulls
Date: Feb 28 09:11:47 1994
From: Alvaro Patricio Jaramillo - jaramill at

This saturday I had the pleasure of birding the Burns Bog Landfill in
Ladner, just south of Vancouver, B.C. along with Rick Toochin, Durrell
Kapan and Peter Jones. After several hours of searching we found an adult
Slaty-backed Gull in the 10000, or so gulls. Rick and I had seen the Slaty-
backed Gull last week in the fields outside of the dump. The bird I saw, and
photographed last week, appeared smaller, paler mantled, and with duller leg
colouration than the bird in the dump. The bird Rick saw last week had a clean
white head, unlike the bird at the dump and the bird I saw last week. The
dump bird appears to be the same individual that was there on Dec. 27, 94 and
later on in January (seen by Rick, Peter Jones and Rick's brother Mike).
If that was impossible to follow, the point is that it appears that there is
more than a single Slaty-backed Gull in Vancouver, and it could be as high
as three birds!

The Glaucous gull numbers are equally impressive. There was a total of 7
in the dump yesterday and another 6 in the fields outside of the dump, another
bird was seen right in Vancouver on Sunday. There may be as many as 14 Glaucous
in the area, almost all are in first winter plumage. Western Gulls, pure
enough to call as such, are around in numbers similar to Glaucous Gulls.

Are there unusually large numbers of Glaucous Gulls elsewhere in the Pacific
Northwest, or are we having an odd concentration here? Also, has the Tacoma
Slaty-backed been seen this week, or has it moved into our area possibly?

Al Jaramillo
Vancouver, B.C.
jaramill at