Date: 11/30/19 2:39 pm From: <clearwater...> Subject: [obol] Great Black-backed Gull at Coffin Butte Landfill north of Corvallis
Just back from a walk up the Coffin Butte Trail (annex on on the west side of E.E. Wilson Wildlife Area). On my way up the hill I noticed about 500 gulls swirling around in the dumping area of the adjacent landfill, so I went out to the boundary of the wildlife area and scanned the flock from there.
Looked like the usual winter mix (I'll add more later) but one resting on the geotextile-covered slope jumped out as me as about 15-20% longer in body length compared with the nearby Western x Glaucous-winged mutts. Massive bill, yellowish with black band across the tip. Angular head. Very dark on the mantle but mottled brownish wings below that.
Didn't have my scope or camera along ... was trying to get some exercise so I finished the hike up the hill quickly and came back. Only about 200 gulls left when I came back down and I didn't see the big guy, but it could have still been there (didn't look real hard). Another 50 or so gulls had moved off to the upper treatment pond for landfill leachate, just off Coffin Butte Rd by the landfill entrance. Others were flying around in the sky, probably starting to head back to their nocturnal roost pretty soon here.