European Herring Gull

Larus argentatus

 The picture shows the portrait of a european herring gull. IUCN Red List endangerment category: Least concern
  • Family
    Gulls (Laridae)
  • Weight
    1,0 – 1,5 kg
  • Habitat
    Coastal waters

Not all seagulls are the same

The European herring gull is a common species along the German coast. It is however difficult to distinguish herring gulls from other seagull species. In summer, adult birds can be identified by the following features: flesh-coloured legs, pale grey wings, a red spot on the lower bill and a distinctly beady-eyed look.

A European Herring Gull looks directly into the camera.

Life in the colony

The herring gull breeds in summer in large colonies, usually in inaccessible places such as islands or cliffs, where it is protected from predators. The species can also be found nesting in close proximity to humans due to the rich food supply. It is therefore not uncommon to find their nests on the ground, under stairs or next to lamp posts in seaside towns.

Herring gull chicks instinctively peck at the red spot on their parents’ bill when they want to be fed.