Birds of North Carolina:
their Distribution and Abundance
Slaty-backed Gull - Larus schistisagus
LARIDAE Members:
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General Comments The Slaty-backed Gull is a mainly Siberian-breeding species that is seen in small numbers annually in Alaska. The number of records elsewhere in North America is increasing in recent years (as they are for many gull species), including records from the eastern parts of North America -- odd for an eastern Pacific species. Some of these "records" may well represent mis-identifications, as the species looks quite similar to what a hybrid of Great Black-backed and Herring gulls would look like. The one report of this species for North Carolina -- an adult in winter plumage at Cape Hatteras Point on 16 Feb 2003* (N. Am. Birds 57:190) -- was accepted by the NC BRC, but full details have yet to be published. This was a sight report only; no photos were obtained. As with the sole state Black-tailed Gull record, there is some concern whether the species was correctly identified (either as a different species or as a hybrid); also as with the Black-tailed Gull, the longer that time goes by without a published description, the more questions that will be raised about its identification.
Breeding Status Nonbreeder
NC BRC List Provisional
State Status
U.S. Status
State Rank SA
Global Rank G5
Coastal Plain One record (see above).
Piedmont No records.
Mountains No records.
Finding Tips
Attribution LeGrand[2023-03-14], LeGrand[2018-02-01], LeGrand[2012-06-09]
NC Map
Map depicts all counties with a report (transient or resident) for the species.
Click on county for list of all known species.