Glaucous-winged gull

Glaucous-winged gull

Glaucous-winged gull

4 languages
Larus glaucescens
Life Span
25 years
908 g

The glaucous-winged gull (Larus glaucescens ) is a large, white-headed gull. The genus name is from Latin Larus which appears to have referred to a gull or other large seabird. The specific glaucescens is New Latin for "glaucous" from the Ancient Greek, glaukos, denoting the grey color of its wings.


This gull is a large bird, being close in size and shape to the closely related Western gull (L. occidentalis ). It measures 50–68 cm (20–27 in) in length and 120–150 cm (47–59 in) in wingspan, with a body mass of 730–1,690 g (1.61–3.73 lb). It weighs around 1,010 g (2.23 lb) on average. Among standard measurements, the wing chord is 39.2 to 48 cm (15.4 to 18.9 in), the bill is 4.6 to 6.4 cm (1.8 to 2.5 in) and the tarsus is 5.8 to 7.8 cm (2.3 to 3.1 in). It has a white head, neck, breast, and belly, a white tail. The silver-gray wings and back form the mantle, which is darker than that of the Glaucous gull and paler than the Herring gull and Western Gull. The primary flight feathers (wingtips) are grey, usually the same shade as the mantle. Its legs are pink and the beak is yellow with a red subterminal spot (the spot near the end of the bill that chicks peck in order to stimulate regurgitative feeding). The irises are typically dark, and surrounded by pink orbital skin. The forehead is somewhat flat. During the winter, the head and nape is darker with a varied smudged or mottled pattern, and the bill colour becomes duller, often with dark markings near the tip. Young birds are brown or gray with black beaks, and take four years to reach adult plumage.



Glaucous-winged gull habitat map
Glaucous-winged gull habitat map
Glaucous-winged gull
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Habits and Lifestyle

The glaucous-winged gull nests in the summer, and each pair produces two or three chicks which fledge at six weeks.

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It feeds along the coast, scavenging for dead or weak animals, fish, mussels and scraps. In urban areas it is well known for its tendency to accept food from people and peck open unprotected garbage bags in search of edibles.

Its call is a low-pitched "kak-kak-kak" or "wow", or a more high-pitched wailing.

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Seasonal behavior
Bird's call

Diet and Nutrition



1. Glaucous-winged gull Wikipedia article -
2. Glaucous-winged gull on The IUCN Red List site -
3. Xeno-canto bird call -

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