Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Temps in the 40s, mostly sunny, Wind SE 10-20 mph

Weather, May 31, 2023

I had two birds of note on this final day of this trip.

One was a Common Raven — only the fourth that I’ve seen this trip.

The other was a gull that I could not identify.

I found it on NavFac Beach. It looked darker than the other gulls. But lighting can do that up here. However, when it turned, it was still dark.

It was Glaucous-winged sized, but had a darker mantle and black primary tips. However, it wasn’t as dark as a Slaty-backed or a Vega sup-species of Herring Gull.

I went down to the beach and got photos. No one else was able to find it later.

I sent the photos to Isaac Helmericks (my go-to Adak guy!) and he said “I would say it is a Glaucous-winged hybrid. The wing tips are not dark enough for a pure Herring/Vega and it’s not a Slaty-backed.  Seen birds like this on Attu. I don’t think one can really know if they are hybrids with Slaty or Vega.”

So I guess I got a half-species for the trip list?

Hybrid Gull, NavFac Beach, May 31, 2023
Hybrid Gull, NavFac Beach, May 31, 2023
Hybrid Gull, NavFac Beach, May 31, 2023

The highlight of this trip was the pod of Orcas!

No lifers, but several semi-lifers. Great photos of Tufted Duck and Red-throated Loon.

There were few shorebirds. No stints. No Sanderlings.

So, although my total Trip List 69 (and a half!) was above average, it was because of getting many common and uncommon species, rather than rarities.

Today‛s eBird list can be seen at

I will be back September 17 to Oct 1, 2023.