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Gulls of North America, Europe, and Asia

Gulls of North America, Europe, and Asia
Klaus Malling Olsen & Hans Larsson
Princeton : Princeton University Press, 2003
QL696 .C46 O58 2003

The gulls are a large family of seabirds, familiar and distinctive as a group, but one of the most challenging to separate at the species level, especially in their various stages of immature plumage. This guide offers the most comprehensive treatment ever published on the gulls of North America, Europe, and Asia. Klaus Malling Olsen and Hans Larsson treat a total of forty-three species - each depicted in considerable detail, with a full description of every plumage and racial variation. The text is complemented not only by superb color paintings by Larsson, but also by more than 800 color photographs.

Gulls explore a variety of habitats, consume a wide range of food, and are often extremely abundant. They are also great wanderers, with several American species often appearing in Western Europe and vice versa. As well as identification criteria, this book includes an up-to-date assessment of the range and status of every species, together with information on patterns of vagrancy.

This important guide is published at a critical time in the development of gull taxonomy. The large white-headed gulls found in North America, Europe, and Asia comprise a super-species complex, with the precise relationships between various components still under considerable debate. A thorough illustrative and textual treatment of the group is needed, and this book provides the most recent and complete overview. This is the essential reference to a fascinating and endlessly challenging group of birds.

Quoted from dustjacket.