French: Mouette atricille German: Aztekenmöwe Spanish: Gaviota guanaguanare
Subspecies and Distribution
L. a. megalopterus
Bruch, 1855 – breeds locally from SE California S to W Mexico (Jalisco), and from Maine to Florida and Texas, sparsely through E Central America; winters S to S Peru.
L. a. atricilla
Linnaeus, 1758 – West Indies to Leeward Antilles and Trinidad and islands off Venezuela; also French Guiana (Connétable Is); winters S to N Brazil.
36–46 cm; 203–400 g; wingspan 95–120 cm. A medium-sized, slender and elegant gull with a relatively small head and a long, heavy slightly drooping bill,... read more
Rather silent outside breeding season. A cackling, rather goose-like, laughing, nasal “ha ha ha”.... read more
Strictly coastal. Breeds on vegetated sandy beaches or islands and saltmarshes (Long I to Virginia... read more
Food and feeding
Aquatic invertebrates and insects (beetles, grasshoppers, ants); also fish, particularly in winter, scraps and refuse. Kleptoparasitic on... read more
Lays mid to late May in N, in late Apr in Florida. Colonies of dozens to 10,000 pairs; high turnover rate. In West Indies nests under... read more
Post-breeding dispersal is N, followed by movement S. Those breeding in Florida and West Indies... read more
Status and conservation
Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Global population estimated at 792,000–807,000 individuals (race megalopterus) and 37,700–80,400 individuals (... read more
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