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Common Black-headed Gull | Larus ridibundus

The Common Black-headed Gull is a Southern African bird that belongs to the Laridae bird family group which includes birds such as Typical Shrikes.

The description for the Common Black-headed Gull (Latin name Larus ridibundus) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Larus ridibundus can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 319 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 446. You will find a picture of the Common Black-headed Gull on page 416.

NOTE: The reference for the information following is "Roberts Birds of Southern Africa", 7th Edition*. This edition contained a number of taxonomic changes as well as changes to English names used traditionally and in earlier editions of most bird books in South Africa. The following paragraph notes such changes if any.

This bird is known as Black-headed Gull in the Roberts 6th Edition. There have been no changes in the Latin name for the Common Black-headed Gull between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition

The Common Black-headed Gull has a height of 38 cms and weighs around 310 gms. The head is coloured brown while the bill is coloured crimson. The Larus ridibundus has a brown coloured throat, crimson legs and a brown coloured back. The eyes are brown.

Take note of the bird's main distinguishing features such as colour, size and leg length relative to the body size of the bird. Colours of a bird's body parts can be helpful. Be aware what may appear brown to one person is described in Roberts Birds using some other word ... for example brown, black. See colours used in Roberts.

Head is brown

Eyes are brown

Bill is crimson

Legs are crimson

Throat is brown

Back is brown

Feeding Habits ...

This bird forages for food on the ground

This bird has a specially adapted bill which helps it hunt for fish, crabs, shrimp and other aquatic animals in the water.

This bird eats insects such as butterflies, bees, wasps, locusts and ants. These invertebrates are usually hawked aerially, killed and then eaten .

Breeding, Habitat and Nesting Habits ...

You can see the Common Black-headed Gull bird on coastal regions and on the sea shore where the bird will be foraging with other birds

Seen in Flocks, Singles or Pairs Normally ...

This bird is usually seen in small family groups or in large flocks

The reference for the information following is "Roberts Birds of Southern Africa", 7th Edition * edited by PAR Hockey, WRJ Dean and PG Ryan, published by "The Trustees of the John Voelcker Bird Book Fund."

copyright: Tony Roocroft +27-11-454-0105

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