Whale Neighbours – Bonaparte’s Gull


Larus philadelphia (Ord)

These beautiful little gulls are distinguished by their slaty black hood contrasting with white plumage and a back and wings of pearly gray. The bill is black and the legs and feet orange-red. They are common everywhere in the Quoddy Region during August through October when they arrive from northern Ontario, but are most abundant in Head Harbour Passage between Campobello and Deer Island where huge flocks can be seen feeding on swarms of Euphausid Shrimp or krill (Meganyctiphanes norvegica) replenishing their fat reserves for their southward migration.

English: A Northern krill (Meganyctiphanes nor...

A Northern krill (Meganyctiphanes norvegica). (Wikipedia)

They are frequently seen inland plucking insects from the air or foraging in sewage lagoons.

Art MacKay
Photo Wikipedia

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