Grey Gull - Leucophaeus modestus

Length 1.5 ft (45.0 cm)
Weight 12.7-14.1 oz (360-400 g)
Clutch Size 1-3
Chicks at birth Semi-precocial
IUCN Conservation Status Least Concern

The Grey Gull is a medium sized gull found along the west coast of South America. They are dark grey and during breeding their head is white. Their legs and bill are black and the iris is brown. Juveniles are brown with paler brown on the undersides and parts of the head.

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They mainly eat mole crabs and some fish. They will also scavenge at fishing boats and fish plants.

Courtship: No information on courtship but the Grey Gull has an unusual breeding ground for gulls. They breed in the Atacama Desert in northern Chile which has almost no rainfall during the year. This probably limits the number of predators.

Nesting: Nests colonially. The nest is a scrape in the sand. While one adult attends the nest, the other flies to the coast for food to feed the chicks.

Habitat and Range: The Gray Gull is the most common gull along the South American Pacific coast from Ecuador to Chile.

Plumage/Molt No alternate plumage.

Migration: Not a true migrant, but daily movement between the nesting site and the coast.

Tongue/feet: The feet and legs are black.


  • The Free Encyclopedia, Accessed October, 2013
  • The Cornell Lab of Ornithoogy Neotropical Birds, Accessed October, 2013
  • del Hoyo, Josep, Elliott, Andrew, Sargatal, Jordi,, Handbook of the Birds of the World,Lynx Edicions
  • Steve N. G. Howlel & Jon Dunn, Gulls of the Americas Peterson Field Guides,2007

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