There are a number of reasons why I decided to take on this project. My first reason has to do with my interest in birds. This began shortly after moving to Victoria ten and a half years ago. With our house backing onto a wooded area, the chirping of birds is a familiar sound all year long. I often glance out the window to see birds of all forms in the yard throughout the day. Frequently I will pull out the Birds of Victoria or Birds of North America reference guides we have on hand. Unfortunately, the drawings in the first aren’t overly helpful for identification and the number of entries in the second is overwhelming. My second reason has to do with a photography course I took a number of years ago. Since that time I have been trying to think of a practical reason to buy a new camera. Taking pictures of birds requires a powerful zoom lens which my previous point-and-shoot camera could not accommodate. Perfect! My final reason was my desire to take on a new project to welcome in 2011. Hence, bird of the day was born.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Mew Gull

Larus canus

Small gull
Round, white head
Dark eyes
Small, unmarked yellow bill
White underparts
Medium gray back
Big white spots in black wing tips
Yellow legs

Listen to its call.

Last Saturday, I had quite a profitable birding day.  As odd as it may seem, of all the new birds I saw that day, I was most excited about this one. It was the first gull I'd seen since starting this project that didn't have pink legs or a red spot on its bill. Had anyone asked me before I started this blog, I would have said that a typical gull had yellow legs and a plain yellow beak. Consequently, I was surprised that it took me so long to find one that fit my ideal. I wonder if there is such a thing as avian stereotyping? Well, even if there is, I'm pretty sure my ignorance didn't have any negative or prejudicial effects on the gulls.

Learn more about the Mew Gull.

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