Fauna of Saskatchewan 21

California Gull

Larus californicus

Location: Wascana Lake, Regina, SK

Interesting facts:

– California gulls can be distinguished by the red dot and black tip on their yellow beaks. They are fairly large birds and have white bodies, gray wings, and black and white wing tips. Their wing span is over four feet.

– These gulls are omnivores and will eat just about anything – earthworms, fish, birds’ eggs, garbage, carrion, grasshoppers, insects, grain, and more.

– California gulls breed throughout western North America. They travel as far east as Manitoba and as far north as the territories. Breeding occurs at inland lakes and marshes. They migrate to the Pacific coast in the winter time.

– They are very mobile birds; capable of walking, wading, running, diving, flying, and swimming. California gulls can capture food during any of these motions.

– California gulls often breed in colonies, sometimes with Ring-billed gulls. Clutches usually include two to three eggs. Both parents take turns incubating the eggs, which hatch in three to four weeks. Young gulls can fly around six weeks after hatching.



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