1140. Common Gull.
Larus canus, Linn. Syst. Nat. i. p. 224 (1766) ; Naum. x. p. 301, Taf, 261 ; Hewitson, ii. p. 495, pl. cxxxviii. ; Gould, B. of E. v. pl. 437 ; id. B. of Gt. Brit. v. pl. 60 ; Dresser, viii. p. 381, pl. 600 ; David and Oust. Ois. Chine, p. 517 ; Seebohm, B. Jap. Emp. p. 293 ; Saunders, Cat. B. Br. Mus, xxv. p. 277 ; id. Manual, p. 671 ; Tacz. F. O. Sib. O. p. 1033 ; Ridgway, p. 33 ; Lilford, vi. p. 49, pl. 22 ; L. niveus, Pall. (nec. Bodd.), Zoog. Ross. As. ii. p. 320, Tab. 61 (1811) ; Tacz. F. O. Sib. O. p. 1034.
Goeland cendre, French ; Gavinote, Span. ; Gavina, Ital. ; Sturm- mowe, German ; Kleine Zeemeeuw, Dutch ; Stormaage, Dan. ; Fiskemaage, Norweg. ; Fiskmase, Swed. ; Kalalokki, Finn. ; Sisaja-Tschaika, Klusha, Russ.
Male ad. (Sweden). Head, neck, tail-coverts, tail, and entire under parts pure white ; mantle delicate, light French-grey ; 1st primary black, with a broad white bar close to the tip, the 2nd with a smaller bar, the 3rd with merely a white spot near the tip ; inner primaries French-grey with black bars and white tips ; secondaries with broad white tips ; bill greenish yellow ; legs greenish grey ; iris golden brown, in very old birds greyish white ; orbital ring vermilion Culmen 1.8, wing 14.0, tail 5.5, tarsus 1.85 inch. In winter the head and nape are streaked with dull brown.
Hab. Europe generally, north to about 53° N. lat. and of rare occurrence in Iceland ; wintering in the Mediterranean and the Nile valley ; Eastern Asia, north to Kamchatka ; Japan, Corea, and China ; wintering in the Persian Gulf ; has once occurred in Labrador.
In general habits it resembles its allies, and is not found only on the sea but tolerably far inland, where it feeds on the worms turned up by the plough, its food consisting of small fish, sand-eels, mollusca, and small crustacea, worms, and insects. Its flight is light and buoyant, and its cry is shrill and somewhat harsh. It breeds both on the coast and on inland lakes, making a nest of seaweed, grass, &c., and in May deposits 2 or 3, usually 3, eggs, which are brownish olive, marked with dull purplish brown shell blotches and dark brown surface spots and blotches, in size measuring about 2.29 by 1.63.
In North America the present species is replaced by a slightly smaller species, L. brachyrhynchus, Richardson, which has once been obtained in the Kurile Islands.
1140. Larus canus
1140. Common Gull.