Black-tailed Gull

Larus crassirostris

Order

CHARADRIIFORMES

Family

Gulls, Terns, Skimmers (Laridae)

Code 4

BTGU

Code 6

LARCRA

ITIS

ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Least Concern

The Black-tailed Gull is a medium-sized seabird with a fairly small breeding range of 157,000 square kilometers in coastal habitats of eastern China, Russia, the Korean peninsula, and Japan. It winters in coastal waters near its breeding grounds although vagrants also occur in Alaska and other parts of North America. This bird eats a diet of small fish, mollusks, crustaceans, and offal. The Black-tailed Gull can also be found following fleets of commercial fishing boats and ships in search of food, and frequently steals food from other seabirds. The Black-tailed Gull has an estimated population of 1,100,000 individuals, and a conservation rating of Least Concern.

IBIRD EXPLORER GENERAL

PHOTO SHARING AND DISCUSSION

BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

SUMMARY

Overview

Black-tailed Gull: Large gull with white head, neck, breast, and underparts; light charcoal-gray wings and back; large yellow bill with black ring above red tip; pale yellow eyes with red orbital ring; short yellow legs and feet; long wings; telltale short black tail with white edge.

 

Range and Habitat

Black-tailed Gull: Native of eastern Asia. Casual to coastal Alaska and northeastern North America, as far south as Virginia; has been seen in San Diego Bay. Found in coastal environments, near quieter waters such as estuaries and bays. Breeding colonies are found in rocky coastal cliffs, or sandy shorelines.

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Black-tailed Gull SONGS AND CALLS

Black-tailed Gull OO1

Call is a deep, repeated "ka-oo".

Similar Sounding


Voice Text

"kaoo-kaoo"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • A study in Japan found that their eggs come in three shapes, 68% are conical, 23% are longitudinal and 9% are oval.
  • The Black-tailed Gull has a cat-like call, giving it its Japanese name-Umineko, or Sea cat, and Korean name-Gwaeng-yi gull, which means cat gull.
  • There are about 11 records for Alaska and another 9 or so for the rest of North America, including sightings as far south as Belize and as far east as Newfoundland.
  • A group of gulls has many collective nouns, including a "flotilla", "gullery", "screech", "scavenging", and "squabble" of gulls.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP NORTH AMERICA

About this North America Map

This map shows how this species is distributed across North America.

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

John Schwarz

Artist

Yury Lisyak

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BIRDS AND BIRDING

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BreastX
The upper front part of a bird.
Lower mandibleX
The lower part of the bill.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X