BIRDS OF ICELAND : Larus argentatus, Herring gull

Larus argentatus; the herring gull is a very common gull both in the European countries as well as in the northern America's. On Iceland, however, it is a relative new species. It started to colonize Iceland in the 1920's. It is very closely related to the glaucus gull (Larus hyperboreus) with which it will hybridize with fertile off spring. One could question if these are really two different species. The species boundary of the Larus genus is though, very complicated and confusing. Hybridization between the Herring gull and the Lesser Black-backed gull even occurs occasionally throughout Europe. The herring gull type can be found along most coastal regions of Iceland but for the north-western districts. In these regions the glaucous gull type is prevalent. The herring gull has more grayish top parts and has black spots on the wing tips - missing on the glaucous gull. The legs are pink.

A brief introduction to Iceland birds
Text & Photographs by Dick Vuijk
- unless stated otherwise
Other Gulls and Gull-related species

Other Gulls and Gull-related species

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Natural History of Iceland Site  in Dutch

Natural History of Iceland Site  Dutch