Laughing Gull (Leucophaeus atricilla)

Order: Charadriiformes | Family: Laridae | IUCN Status: Least Concern

Age: Adult, basic | Sex: Unknown | Loc. North America

Age: Immature/Adult | Sex: Unknown | Loc. North America

Age: Adult, alternate | Sex: Unknown | Loc. North America

Age: Juvenile | Sex: Unknown | Loc. North America

Identification & Behavior: ~41 cm (16.1 in). The Laughing Gull in basic plumage is white below and gray above. It has grayish on the crown and nape areas with bill and legs black. Birds in alternate plumage have a black head with dark red bill and legs. The juvenile is brown with a black tail band, but it goes through multiple plumage stages towards the adult plumage.  The Laughing Gull has a relatively long bill with a dropped tip of the culmen and black wings (with small tips in the primary feathers). It is similar to the abundant Franklin’s Gull, but it is distinguished by a longer, thicker bill with a dropped culmen tip, and by having black wings.

Status: The Laughing Gull is an uncommon Boreal Migrant along the coast of northern Peru. It is rare further south to Arequipa and also a very rare vagrant to Amazonia. It also occurs in Co, Ec, and Br.

Name in Spanish: Gaviota Reidora.

Sub-species: Laughing Gull (Leucophaeus atricilla megalopterus), Bruch 1855.

Meaning of Name: Chroicocephalus: Gr. khroizö= color and kephalos, kephale= his head. atricilla: L. atri= black and cilla= tail.

See more of the Family Laridae   peru aves

Distribution Map


    • Species range based on: Schulenberg, T. S., D. F. Stotz, and L. Rico. 2006. Distribution maps of the birds of Peru, version 1.0. Environment, Culture & Conservation (ECCo). The Field Museum. on 01/01/2015.