Gull Mental Note

NOTE: I swear this blog will not turn into one of those endless gull discussions, just a note on a minor breakthrough I had with my birding ability.

I had a breakthrough in my gull watching ability at Black Dog Lake Power Plant yesterday! Number 1: I enjoyed doing it yesterday and number 2: I was actually able to pick out gulls that looked different from the bazillions of herring gulls and ring-billed gulls and made tentative mental ids, and had them confirmed by both a field guide and a guy who knows WAY more about gull id than I do.

So, I'm going to post a few photos and see if you can A: pick out the gull that is different and B: can you id the gull? There's not prize, just an easy going series of photos to see if you can find the bird that is different.

The first photo will be big a big flock. The second will be a closer view (and if you are new to gull id, if you can just pick out the different gull and why--that is a triumph of the birding spirit).

Here's the first photos. I think if you click on it, you might get a larger view. Can you figure out which bird is not a herring gull or a ring-billed gull? I show it in a later entry, just see if you can mentally find it. A bigger hint will be in the next photo:

And no, it's not the duck in the front, although if you can id that bird, pat yourself on the back. So, which bird is different, why is it different, and what species is it?

More later.