|Heermann's Gull off San Diego, California. March 8, 2014. Greg Gillson.|
Young birds, which don't breed until 3 years of age wander the farthest. Thus, most of the birds that reach the shores of the Pacific Northwest are all-dark immatures or grayish second cycle birds. There are few adults.
Off southern California, however, adults are always plentiful. Thus, I get many opportunities to photograph these handsome birds on pelagic trips from San Diego. These photos of adult Heermann's Gulls are from my last trip, on March 8th.
Unlike other gulls, adult Heermann's Gulls have gray bodies with a white head, and a black tail. The bill is dark red and the feet and legs black. Again, different from most other gulls with orange bills and pink or yellow legs.