Restart Bird Identification Expert

What was the SIZE of the White Gull-like bird you saw in Virginia?

Ivory Gull: A pure white gull whose entire life is restricted to the edge of the floating pack ice. Legs dark, bill dusky with yellow tip. It eats fish, insects, lemmings and crustaceans, and is also an active scavenger. Bouyant, graceful flight. Often flies with feet trailing and dangling below.
Sabine's Gull: Small gull with gray back and white nape, rump, and underparts. Hood is solid black and eye-ring is dark red. Bill is black with yellow tip; legs and feet are black. The upperwings are gray with black primaries and white secondaries. Tail is slightly forked when folded.
Ross's Gull: The pink gull of the high Arctic. Small gull, pale gray upperparts, gray-white nape, white neck with thin black collar, and white, wedge-shaped tail; underparts are variably pink. Black bill is very short; legs, feet are orange-red. Often feeds on mudflats like a wader.
Franklin's Gull: This medium-sized gull has a gray back and white underparts. It has a black head, white eye ring, orange bill with a black spot near the tip, and red-orange legs. The wings are short with white spotted black tips. It has a strong direct flight with deep wing beats. It feeds mostly on terrestrial and aquatic insects. The sexes are similar; males are slightly larger.
Mew Gull: Medium-sized gull with gray back and upperwings, and white head, neck, breast, and belly. Bill is bright yellow. Wings have white-spotted black tips; tail is white. Feet and legs are dull yellow. Graceful, bouyant flight. Undulating, with several rapid wingbeats and a pause.
California Gull: This is a medium-sized gull with a white head and underparts, gray wings and black wing tips. The bill and legs are yellow, and it has a red eyering. It has a strong direct flight with deep wing beats. It feeds on worms, mice, other birds and their eggs, and garbage. The sexes are similar, but the males are usually larger than females, with a larger bill, head and tarsi.
Yellow-legged Gull: Large white gull, medium gray upperparts and red spot on bright yellow bill; legs and feet are yellow. Tail is white. Wades or makes shallow dives to catch food, steals, scavenges. Strong, direct flight with deep, steady wing beats. Rides thermals and updrafts, sometimes hovers.
Sooty Tern: This medium-sized tern has long wings, a deeply forked tail, black crown, nape, and upperparts and a broad triangular white forehead patch. The underparts are white; upper tail is black with white outer edges. It has a direct flight with strong, shallow wing beats. It hovers before dipping for prey. It feeds on squid and fish. Sexes are similar.
Bridled Tern: Medium pelagic tern. Black crown, nape separated from gray-brown upperparts by whitish collar. Chevron-shaped white forehead patch extends behind eye. Long pointed wings and deeply forked tail. Whitish underparts; underwings have brown trailing edge. Black bill, legs.
Gull-billed Tern: Lightest North American tern. Black cap that extends below eyes, down nape; pale gray upperparts that are darker at the wingtips; short, stout black bill and black legs, feet; long wings with very long outer primaries. Direct flight with graceful, shallow wing beats.
White-winged Tern: Small tern, black head, body, and underwing coverts; white rump, vent, upperwing coverts, and tail; flight feathers are pale gray. Bill is dark red to black; Red legs and feet. Fluttering, uneven flight with slow, shallow wing beats. Hovers before dipping for prey.
Arctic Tern: This is a medium-sized, slim tern with gray upperparts, black cap, a white rump and throat, and pale gray underparts. The tail is deeply forked and white with dark edged outer feathers. The bill is dark red. The legs and feet are red. It has a buoyant, graceful flight with steady wing beats. It feeds on small fish, crustaceans and insects. Both sexes are similar in appearance.
Elegant Tern: Medium tern, pale gray upperparts, white underparts may have pink tint. Black cap has shaggy crest; orange or red-orange bill is long, slightly decurved. Outermost primaries have faint black smudges. Tail deeply forked, legs are black. Hovers above water before diving.
White-tailed Tropicbird: This large white bird has a long black bar on upperwing coverts and outer primaries, black loral mask which extends through and past the eye, yellow-orange bill, white tail streamers, yellow legs and feet and black webbed toes. Feeds on fish and squid. Buoyant, graceful pigeon-like flight with fluttering wing strokes alternating with soaring glides. Sexes are similar.
Red-billed Tropicbird: This slender, white, gull-like seabird is the largest tropic bird. It has long white tail streamers, a white back that is finely barred in black, a black eye stripe curves that upward behind the eye, black primaries, and a red bill. Female resembles the male but is less tinged with red. Feeds on fish and squid. Direct, rapid flight; pigeon like, stiff, shallow wing beats.
Yellow-nosed Albatross: Pelagic albatross with pale gray head, neck, rump, black back, upperwings, white underparts and black margin around white underwings. Red-tipped black bill has yellow patch on upper mandible. Gray legs, feet. Glides and soars for hours with minor adjustments to wing position.
Black-browed Albatross: White head, neck, underparts, and black back, tail. Yellow bill with red tip, pale pink-gray legs and feet. Easily identified by black tail, stiff wing beats and long narrow pointed wings. Soars effortlessly for long periods of time, may circle and glide for long distances.
Black-capped Petrel: Large petrel with white underparts, dark brown to black back and upper wings, black cap, and white collar (this field mark is missing in some birds). Tail is long, dark, and wedge-shaped; underwings show broad dark margins. Hooked bill is dark, legs are pink. High arcing flight.
Fea's Petrel: Medium petrel, gray-brown upperparts, white belly. White breast with partial gray-brown breast band. Wings bend back at the wrist, have a dark M pattern across upperwings and lower back. Underwings are mostly dark. White face, dark mask around eyes. Gray tail, pale uppertail coverts.
Brown Booby: This large seabird is mostly dark brown with white under wing coverts, belly and vent. It has a blue-gray to yellow bill and yellow legs and feet. To acquire food, it plunge dives from 30 to 50 feet. It feeds on parrot fish, flatfish, mullets and other fish. It has alternating strong rapid wing beats and glides. The sexes are similar.
Northern Gannet: Very large seabird. White overall with black primaries and long pointed wings. Light buff-yellow wash on crown of head extending down nape may be visible. Bill, legs, and feet are gray. Dives for fish and squid. Alternates rapid wing beats with short glides. Soars to great heights.
Thayer's Gull: Having had full species status since 1973, as of 2017, the AOU considers this gull to be a subspecies of the Iceland Gull and has lumped it there. To see this please jump to the Iceland Gull species account. New subspecies range maps for this bird will be available in the next iBird update at which time we will retire the Thayer’s Gull as it’s own species.
Restart Bird Identification Expert