Nor'easter brings Glaucous and Iceland Gulls to the South Fork - 13 Mar 2010

Todays Nor'easter pounded the eastern tip of Long Island and birds were few and far between. The storm still rages as I type. The high winds, heavy rain and volume of spray/sand in the air made seawatching a challenge to say the least. When I could see beyond the crashing surf, there seemed to be little activity. On the ponds, waterfowl numbers seem low and I could not find anything of note among the lingering flocks of Canada Geese.

Not too surprisingly, most of the Great Black-backed Gulls had moved inland off the beaches to wait out the weather and flocks stood huddled in fields and other open areas. Looking through these, I found an adult GLAUCOUS GULL on Bridge Lane in Sagaponack, and just before dusk a 2nd basic-type GLAUCOUS GULL on Further Lane in East Hampton. This latter bird, a predominantly white individual, flew in as I was watching an adult KUMLEIN'S ICELAND GULL bathing in a rain water pool. A couple of Bonparte's Gulls were on Shorts Pond in Bridgehampton, the first time I've seen the species there. Ironically, we've reached a point where I find the absence of any Lesser Black-backed Gulls among these storm displaced gulls more surprising than if one or two were present.

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