[mou] Duluth Trip; Unusual Gull (Mew?)

Nathan Schirmacher natester166 at hotmail.com
Sat Nov 8 21:46:09 CST 2008

Nathan and I traveled to Duluth and Two Harbors today.  Highlights included all three scoters, a Red-throated Loon, Golden Eagle (amidst an eagle migration), Northern Goshawk and a number of winter finch flocks at Stoney Point, including White-winged Crossbills.
However, the bird that drew our greatest attention was an unusual gull in the Park Point soccer fields/parking lot.  We were initially attracted to this immature gull by its darker color and small size, further examination yielded a brown belly, thick dark tail band with an inverted V, small pink bill with a dark tip, pink to greyish legs, white throat and darker face than the immature Ring-billeds around it.  The gull appeared slightly smaller than the surrounding Ring-billeds, although such appearances can be deceptive.  We observed the bird - unfortunately during the snow showers - for about 20 minutes on two occasions around 11 AM - through bins and a scope - at rest and in flight.  However, when we returned with Mike Hendrickson and Peder Svingen, the bird was not apparent/present.
The evidence seems to point towards a Mew, although we are aware how unusual such a bird would be.  Mike and Peder were still searching for the bird when we left for lunch; we appreciate their interest.
Good birding to all!
Al Schirmacher, on Nathan's systemNathan SchirmacherPrinceton,MNMille Lacs County 
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