A New Mexican in Florida-Part II

One of the activities that I enjoyed at the Space Coast Birding and Wildlife Festival was a trip to Daytona Beach Shores, which has a large concentration of gulls during the winter months. I saw Laughing Gulls, Ring-billed Gulls, Herring Gulls, Great Black-backed and Lesser Black-backed Gulls as well as a Bonaparte’s Gull, a Thayer’s Gull and an Iceland Gull. Being from New Mexico I had a very difficult time differentiating between the various gulls, but it was a real treat to see so many of them in one place. It was also a treat to be warm after the cold of the morning’s activities.

Gaggle of birders at Daytona Beach Shores.

Gaggle of birders at Daytona Beach Shores.

The gulls were at the water’s edge …

Gulls at Daytona Beach Shores.

Gulls and a Brown Pelican at the water's edge.

… and flying over the beach …

Laughing Gulls at Daytona Beach Shores.

Laughing Gulls

… and over the water. Note the splashes where the gulls are diving in the surf.

Gulls at Daytona Beach Shores.

Gulls flying over the ocean and diving.

As the gulls flew in, there was competition for space at the water’s edge.

Laughing Gull landing on the shore.

Laughing Gull landing on the shore.

Juvenile Herring Gull finds a spot.

Juvenile Herring Gull finds a spot.

I enjoyed seeing the different species of gulls.

Ring-billed Gull

Ring-billed Gull

Laughing Gulls

Laughing Gulls

Laughing Gull in breeding plumage.

Laughing Gull in breeding plumage.

Juvenile Herring Gull with a tasty morsel.

Juvenile Herring Gull with a tasty morsel.


2nd winter Herring Gull

2nd winter Herring Gull

Adult Herring Gull and friend.

Adult Herring Gull and friend.

1st winter Great Black-backed Gull.

1st winter Great Black-backed Gull.

The experienced birders showed me other gulls in their spotting scopes: Lesser Black-backed Gulls, a Bonaparte’s Gull, a Thayer’s Gull and an Iceland Gull, but I was not able to get photographs of them.

There were other lovely birds on this beach too. Brown Pelicans flew overhead.

Brown Pelicans.

Brown Pelicans.

This Royal Tern bathed happily in the waves.

Royal Tern bathing in the waves.

Royal Tern bathing in the waves.


Royal Tern

Royal Tern

I loved watching the tiny Sanderlings feeding busily at the surf’s edge.

Sanderling

Sanderling

I had never seen sunset colors over the Atlantic before.

Atlantic sunset colors.

Atlantic sunset colors.

It was a wonderful day at Daytona Beach Shores.

Gull tracks

It is entirely possible, likely even, that I have mis-identified any number of gulls in this post. Please feel free to point out errors.

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8 Comments

Filed under Florida birds

8 responses to “A New Mexican in Florida-Part II

  1. Scott

    Love the webbed footprints in the sand. So many gulls.!

  2. BirdGalAlcatraz

    Super post, Linda! Love seeing all these gulls. I’m so lousy at gull ID so it’s a treat to see these different one.

  3. Thanks for your comments! Everything I know about gull ID I learned that day. I’m sure I’ve made errors, but I’m doing my best to learn.

  4. Shorebird777

    Lovely photos! So much fun watching the gulls trying to shoehorn themselves into that crowd. And the bathing tern is amazing. (My son calls RT’s “Rock Stars” because of their punk haircuts.) Thanks for sharing!
    Susan

  5. I love gulls too. The photo of the single gull against a beautiful sky as well as the tracks really caught my eye. Good post.

  6. Thanks Susan and Joan. It was really a treat for this New Mexican to see so many gulls! Happy you enjoyed the photos. It’s a treat to share them.

    Linda

  7. Richard

    The “2nd winter Herring Gull” photo is a 1st winter Ring-billed Gull.
    Richard

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