235. Larus cachinnans

235. Larus cachinnans.


Male 23" to 25 3/4"; 1 3/4 to 2 lbs. 6 oz. Legs bright yellow. Bill yellow, red below. Eye-ring vermilion. Head, neck, tail, and below white. Mantle, secondaries, and tertiaries grey. Paler than in L. affinis, and merely a climatic race of L. argentatus. S. Europe, N. Africa, and S. W, Asia, ranging in winter as far east as Bay of Bengal. (B. 1495. S.E. i. 270.) See illustration, p. 219.

Also L. argentatus. 24". The Herring-Gull. Legs flesh colour. Bill yellow, red angle. Orbital ring pale yellow. Remiges thirty-four. All primaries tipped white. First quill white tip 2 1/2", which is divided by a narrow black bar into "tip" and "mirror." Second quill blackish for nearly 1/2" on both sides of shaft, with black subterminal bar, a white mirror, and on inner web a broad grey wedge. Fourth quill with grey on both webs above the bar. Sixth quill grey without a bar. The remaining quills grey, with white tips.— In winter : Head and neck streaked brown and grey. N. Europe, Greenland, and N. America, southwards in winter to Bermudas, California, Mediterranean, Black and Caspian Seas.

L. vegae. 24". Resembles L. cachinnans, but legs are pale flesh colour. Arctic coast of Siberia, southwards in winter to China, Japan, and Formosa.

L. audouini. 20". Legs olive. Bill red, banded black, tip yellow. First quill black, with small white spot on inner web. Third quill, black, with grey wedge on inner web. W. Mediterranean.

L. delawarensis. 18 1/2". Legs greenish. Bill greenish, with black zone and yellow tip. Mantle pearl-grey. First quill with long white mirror on both webs, then a black bar and tip white. Second quill with smaller white mirror and grey wedge on inner web. Third quill without mirror, more white at tip and grey on greater part of both webs. N. America.

L. californicus. 20". Legs greenish. Bill yellow, with red spot near tip. Eye-ring vermilion. First quill black, with shaft and end white. Second quill with black shaft and white mirror, black subterminal bar and white tip. W.N. America.

L. canus. 17" to 18 1/2". The Common Gull. Legs greenish. Bill greenish, with yellow tip. Orbital ring vermilion. Remiges thirty-one. First quill black, with white subterminal mirror 2" long. Second quill black, with grey basal wedge and smaller white mirror. Third quill black, with grey at base on both webs and sometimes a small subterminal white spot. Fourth, fifth, and sixth quills chiefly grey, with black bars and broad white tips.— In winter : Head and upper neck streaked and mottled ash-brown. N. Europe and Asia, southwards in winter to Mediterranean, Nile Valley, and Persian Gulf, From Kamschatka to China and Japan.

L. brachyrhynchus. 17". Legs olive. Bill olive, tip yellow. Orbital ring vermilion. First quill with long white mirror on both webs, followed by subterminal black bar. Second quill with mirror and white bar. Western portion of Arctic and sub-Arctic America.

Quills devoid of black ; mostly pale grey or white.

L. glaucesceus. 25" to 26". Legs flesh-colour. Bill yellow, angle red. First quill white at tip for 2". Second quill with white subterminal spot on each web and white tip. Third quill without distinct spots and with white tip. Behring Sea, Kamschatka, and in winter south to California and N. Japan.

L. nelsoni. 23". Legs yellow. Bill yellow, with red' spot. First quill ash-grey on outer web, with pale stripe 1/3" wide next shaft. 3" of tip white. Alaska and N.W. America.

L. kumlieni. 19 1/2". Legs yellow. Bill yellow, angle red. Third and fourth quills with defined subterminal bar across both webs. Baffin's Land.

L. glaucus. 29". The Glaucous Gull, Legs pink. Bill yellow, angle red. Eye-ring orange. Head, neck, tail, and below white. Mantle pale grey. Primaries pearl-grey basally and tipped white on outer webs,—In winter: Head and neck mottled pale brown. Circum polar, ranging south in winter to Mediterranean, Black and Caspian Seas, Japan, California, Texas, and Bermuda.

C. leucopterus. 22". Resembles L. glaucus. All white. Legs and wings very long. Greenland, and in winter to Iceland, the Baltic, the British Isles, N.W. Europe, and N. America.

C. Head without a hood. Tail with a subterminal Hack band.

L. modestus. 18". Legs and bill black, tinged red. Crown and throat grey. Forehead and chin white. Mantle lead colour. First, second, third, and fourth quills chiefly sooty, tipped grey. Tail grey, with subterminal black band. Beneath smoky. Peru and Chili.

L. heermanni. 17". Legs black. Bill red, often tipped black. Head and neck white. Mantle deep slate. First to fifth primaries nearly black, with white tips. Tail black, with broad white tips. Pacific coasts of N. America.

L. belcheri. 20". Legs and bill yellow. Head, neck, and below white. Mantle sooty. First to fifth primaries sooty black, tipped greyish white. Tail chiefly black, tipped with white, outer webs of outermost pair white. Coasts of Chili and Peru.

L. crassirostris. 19". Legs yellow. Bill yellow, angle and tip red, with intervening black zone. Mantle slate-grey. First to fifth primaries blackish, with white tips. Tail white, tinged pale grey on basal half, followed by a black band about 2" wide. Coast of E. Asia, through Japan and China to about 22° N. lat.

Also the genus Gabianus. With bill barely twice its depth. Nostrils very small and ovate. One species— G. pacificus, 25", legs greenish, bill orange, head, neck, and below white, mantle deep black, primaries black, tipped white, tail white, broadly banded black, Australia and Tasmania.

Also the genus Leucophaeus. With hind toe joined to second by a rugose membrane. Webs of anterior toes coarsely indented. One species— L. scoresbii, 18", legs vermilion, bill cherry, orbital ring white, head, neck, and below lavender, mantle black, primaries chiefly black, second quill with minute white tip, fifth quill with white spot on inner web. South of S. America.

Also the genus Pagophila. With hind toe joined to second by a strong serrated membrane. All nails curved. Tibia feathered nearly to joint. One species— P. eburnea, 18", the Ivory Gull, legs black, bill greenish, with yellow tip, orbital ring brick-red, all white. Circumpolar, southwards in winter to north of France.

Also the genus Rissa. Hind toe obsolete or rudimentary. Two species— R. tridactyla, 15 1/2", the Kittiwake, legs blackish, bill yellow, mantle grey, rest white, quills chiefly grey, outer web of first quill black, grey in others, first, second, and third quills terminally black, fourth quill tip white, surmounted by a black bar, wing-lining white. Circumpolar, and in winter south to Mediterranean and Caspian Seas, coasts of America to about 35° N. lat. ; R. brevirostris, 15", legs vermilion, bill yellow, under wing-coverts grey. Lower part of Behring Sea.

Also the genus Xema. Hind toe very small and free. Two species— X. sabinii, 13", legs blackish, bill black, tip yellow, orbital ring vermilion, beneath which is a minute white speck, head deep slate-grey, terminating in a dark black collar, first to fifth quills white, rest black with white tips and broad white margins on inner webs; X. furcata, 20", legs red, bill black, tip horny, white band at base of the bill, head sooty black, with no terminal collar, first to fourth quills blade, with white on inner webs, fifth and sixth tipped white, Arctic regions, and down to 14° S. lat. on the American side of the Pacific.

Also the genus Rhodostethia. With tail cuneate, and central pair of rectrices produced. One species— R. rosea, 13 1/2", legs red, bill black, orbital ring vermilion, head and below white, narrow black collar, mantle and quills pearl-grey, outer web of first quill black.— In winter; No black collar. Circumpolar, exceptionally to about 54° N. lat. in winter. (B.M. Cat., xxv. 161-312.)

Game, Shore And Water Birds Of India
Le Messurier, Augustus. Game, Shore, and Water Birds of India Fourth Edition, 1904.
Title in Book: 
235. Larus cachinnans
Book Author: 
A Le Messurier
Page No: 
Common name: 
Yellow Legged Herring Gull
Caspian Gull
Larus cachinnans
4th ed.
Term name: 

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