Keith Mueller, artist and natural historian (http://coastalbirds2.blogspot.com/), observed one of our banded Great Black-backed Gulls, 1M8, in May 2013. Keith was cod fishing offshore Gloucester, MA at Tillies Bank when he spotted 1M8 hanging around the boat.
1M8 stayed with the vessel a short time as they headed back to Gloucester. Keith says he only saw it for 15 minutes. Somehow, in that brief window of opportunity, Keith managed to take some spectacular photos, which he kindly shared with us. We have only a handful of resights of Appledore gulls offshore, and all of these birds have been Great Black-backed Gulls. Great Black-backed Gulls are thought to be more “oceanic” than Herring Gulls, so our data (albeit a very small sample size) fit this pattern. As we acquire additional resights, we will be in an even better position to test this and other assumptions regarding gull biology. Send us your resights!
Back to 1M8. This bird was banded as a breeding adult at its nest in May 2012, and this is the first observation of it off Appledore. Thanks, Keith, for the interesting resight and fantastic photos!