Atlantic and Mediterranean Yellow-legged Gulls

Nick Rossiter (nrossiter at

Recent modifications:

November 10th 2003: added presentation given at 7th IGM on gull calls

November16th 2003: added photographs of adult and third-summer Southern atlantis from La Palma, Canaries, April 2003.

December 22nd 2003: added photographs of second- and first-summer Southern atlantis from La Palma, Canaries, April 2003.

December 30th 2004 updated statistics in “Characteristics of Yellow-legged Gulls” for calls and adult wingtip patterns and moult to include SW France and La Palma visits.

April 21st 2005: added photographs and notes of Western Mediterranean michahellis from Corsica, Sardinia and Nice.

April 28th 2005: changed title of sire to Atlantic and Mediterranean Yellow-legged Gulls to reflect change.

August 14th 2006: added photographs and notes of Eastern Scandinavian argentatus from southern Finland, including some yellow-legged Herring Gulls.

February 18th 2006: added annotated photographs for first-winter Iberian Atlantic Yellow-legged Gulls from southern Portugal, February 2006.

 Earlier Updates

Photographs, Text Summaries and Publications


Introduction Generic Features of Adults Summary of Terminology Map showing Distribution of Forms Sympatric/Allopatric Breeding


Comparison of biometrics for atlantis and michahellis

Comparison of mantle shades for atlantis, michahellis and other gulls

Statistics for Adults (calls, wingtip, moult)

Statistical Analysis Pairwise of Wingtip Patterns of atlantis and michahellis

Identification Criteria for atlantis from graellsii, argenteus, michahellis and cachinnans

Dwight's Original Texts on atlantis   Stegmann's Original Text on atlantis

Main Forms of Atlantic Yellow-legged Gulls:

1) Southern Atlantic Yellow-legged Gull - Southern atlantis

Adults First-years Second-years Third-years Bannerman's Original Texts on atlantis (Canaries, Madeira, Cape Verde)

2) Iberian Atlantic Yellow-legged Gull - Iberian atlantis

All Ages

3) Azorean Atlantic Yellow-legged Gull - Azorean atlantis

Compiled Information and Comparison

4) Cantabrican Atlantic Yellow-legged Gull - cantabricans

All Ages Comparison with argenteus

5) Atlantic-Mediterranean Intersection Forms - atlantis/michahellis

All Ages

Other Gulls on the Atlantic:

argenteus (Herring Gulls)

South-west England Comparison with cantabricans North-west France South-west France

michahellis (Mediterranean Yellow-legged Gulls)

South-west France South-west Spain

Yellow-legged Gulls in the Western Mediterranean:

Corsica, Sardinia, Nice

Isenmann's original text on Camargue michahellis  Dwight's original text on michahellis

Direct Comparison of Atlantic and Mediterranean Yellow-legged Gulls (atlantis-michahellis):

Notes and photographs

Convergence of Genetic and Morphological studies on atlantis

Review of recent genetic analyses and comparison with morphological work

yellow-legged Herring Gulls in eastern Scandinavia:

southern Finland


1) Characteristics of Atlantic Yellow-legged Gulls

2) Yellow-legged Gulls in the Atlantic-Mediterranean Intersection Zone


1) The Strange World of Gull Identification

Presented at the Northumberland & Tyneside Bird Club, Newcastle, England, October 2001, size 3Mb

2) Yellow-legged Gulls in the Atlantic-Mediterranean Intersection Zone

Presented at 6th International Gull Meeting, Lammi, Finland, 8th-11th August 2002, size 3Mb 

3) The Strange World of Gull Identification: How Many Gull Species?

Presented to Natural History Society of Northumbria on 10th January 2003, size 5Mb 

4) Sonogram Analysis of Calls of Large White-headed Gulls in Western Europe

Presented at 7th International Gull Meeting, Jurata, Poland, 16th-19th October 2003, includes calls, size 16Mb 

© Copyright Nick Rossiter 1999-2007

Other pages:

home page

Honey Buzzards

African Gulls (Sooty Gull, White-eyed Gull, Slender-billed Gull, Grey-headed Gull, Baltic Gull, Heuglin's Gull, Black-headed Gull, Caspian Gull, Laughing Gull, Great Black-headed Gull)

Informatics Pages