Entertained by the Ring-Billed Gulls
I was entertained today while watching a group of ring-billed gulls on the lake. They were hanging out on the ice near an imaginary line separating the frozen surface from the open water.
When the urge struck, a gull or two would hop off the ice into the water to bathe.
Once they were satisfied with their splashing and swimming, they would return to the ice to preen in a variety of interesting styles. I witnessed the one-legged stance, the folded wing twist,
the yoga inspired wing stretch,
the modest head tuck,
and the two-legged pose.
There were a few speckled gulls that looked different than the others.
Later, I looked in my bird book and discovered they were juvenile ring-billed gulls. They have a bi-colored bill that hasn’t yet developed the telltale black ring of the adult.
I was only at the lake for a short period of time, but watching the ring-billed gulls preening and swimming was quite entertaining.