BIRDS OF ICELAND Larus canus, common gull

Larus canus; on first glance the common gull resembles the herring gull. It is smaller though (about 40 cm long, where the herring gull is about 50 to 60 cm long). Other differences are the color of the legs (the common gull has rather yellowish lrgs, the herring gull: pink) and the shape of the head (the common gull has more rounded head and a more friendly face expression). Actually, the head is very similar to the kittywake. Biologically significant is that -like the kittywake - there is no red spot on the beak of the common gull, unlike all other sea gulls with yellow beaks. This red spot fucntions as a focussing point for chicken where to get food - the regurgitating parents - in these species. On Iceland it is a relative new comer. It is seen most often in northern and western coastal regions. I noticed it was the most common gull in the Eyjafjörður district with a well known breeding colony on the island of Hriísey

  Back to general list of all birds (entries start)

  Back to home page

A brief introduction to Iceland birds
Text & Photographs by Dick Vuijk
- unless stated otherwise

 Press on photo for full size

Natural History of Iceland Site   Dutch