Ross’s Gull – Accepted

1. 17–19 November 2006


Red Hill, Salton Sea IMP



Figs. H-19 to H-21, ph., front & back covers WB 38(2), WB 38:138, 139

Ross’s Gull – Not accepted, identification not established

14 Jan 1998


Berkeley ALA











Figures H-19 (above, Andrew Birch), H-20 (below, Brad K. Schram), H-21 (below, Kenneth Z. Kurland). Only a short time before this book went to press, Guy McCaskie managed to find one more California first, fittingly at his beloved Salton Sea. From 17 to 19 November 2006 this adult Ross’s Gull amazed birders at Red Hill Marina, Imperial County (2006-183). All of these images were made on the second day of this bird’s stay. Among characteristic marks shown in the photos on the facing page are the bird’s dainty black bill, pink blush below, smoky underwings with white trailing edge and axillaries, and wedge-shaped tail.



Figure H-20 (above); H-21 (below)









Ross’s Gull

ROSS’S GULL Rhodostethia rosea (MacGillivray, 1824)

Accepted: 1 (50%)


Not accepted: 1

CBRC review: all records

Not submitted/reviewed: 0

Large color images: see Figures H-20, H-21

This petite gull nests primarily above the Arctic Circle in northeastern Siberia, with sporadic isolated nesting in Canada and Greenland. The winter range is unconfirmed but believed to be around ice in the Beaufort, Bering, and Okhotsk Seas. New World vagrants come from across Canada and the northern United States, especially the Northeast. Six records come from the West, including British Columbia: a first-fall bird in southwestern British Columbia 27 October–9 November 1966 (Campbell et al. 1990), a first-spring bird in northeastern Colorado 28 April–7 May 1983 (AB 37:896), an adult on the central coast of Oregon 18 February–2 March 1987, an adult in southeastern Washington/northeastern Oregon 27 November–1 December 1994, an adult in southern central Idaho 21–27 January 1998 (FN 52:228), and an adult in western Montana 3–4 May 2005 (NAB 59:628, 690).

California’s first well-documented Ross’s Gull was a widely seen and photographed adult present from 17 to 19 November 2006 at Red Hill Marina on the south shore of the Salton Sea, Imperial County (Figures H-19 to H-21). As reviewed by McCaskie (2007), this bird was substantially farther south than any Ross’s Gull previously recorded.