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21 hours ago, Bird-Boys said:

Are there any Thayer's or rare gulls, (Besides Glaucous)?

I see one western, a lot of herring, a few Glaucous-wingers a few calis and there might be a Thayers in there. Also there is a Herrmanns 

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The bird on the top left in the first photo *may* be a Thayer’s. We can’t see the whole bird though.

The strategy for looking at a big gull flock like this is to look through them individually and identify each bird, and when you run into a bird you can’t identify or stands out for some reason, then you focus on photographing that bird. It can look overwhelming in the field but if you break it down and look through them individually it’s not so bad. It’s much tougher to do that in photos than in the field.

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47 minutes ago, AlexHenry said:

The bird on the top left in the first photo *may* be a Thayer’s. We can’t see the whole bird though.

The strategy for looking at a big gull flock like this is to look through them individually and identify each bird, and when you run into a bird you can’t identify or stands out for some reason, then you focus on photographing that bird. It can look overwhelming in the field but if you break it down and look through them individually it’s not so bad. It’s much tougher to do that in photos than in the field.

Totally agree. When you take a bunch of photos and try to figure them out afterwards, many of the most important field marks and characteristics are obscured, hidden, or lacking all together. In photos, lighting, illusions, and other pitfalls are more pronounced. 

Most importantly, as you get more familiar with gulls, structure and shape become essential. Yesterday I was at the Herring Run in the SF Bay and could easily pick out the Thayer's on the water. Not because I am an expert, but because I have spent a lot of time looking at gulls. At some point, even the most expert birders known to birding had never seen a [insert bird name here], but they learned about it by spending time in the field, not by throwing pics to an online forum.

I would spend more time studying in the field versus throwing a ton of photos on this forum. As seems to be done more and more on this forum, throwing 15-20 pictures with 30 gulls each in it in multiple posts is rarely going to get you satisfactory ID results because people don't want to look through that mess. But if you find a few interesting gulls, post 'em here and let everyone discuss, which is fun. Looking through pictures of hundreds and hundreds of gulls where most birds are not in profile or with open wings, is not.

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