All seagulls look alike, or do they really?

Is this bird above the same as the bird below?


Red legs vs. Black legs
Rim around eye, red vs. black
Wing colour, one pale grey vs. pale grey with three rows of brown speckles
Tail colour section one, pale grey vs. brown
Tail colour section two, charcoal with distinctive white dots vs. charcoal with faint white dots

So with that in mind let’s find out what they are exactly.

Common Name:  Red-billed Gull, was also known as the Mackerel Gull
Maori Name:  Tarāpunga
Latin Name:  Larus scopulinus

Common Name:  Black-billed Gull
Maori Name: Tarāpunga
Latin Name:  Larus bulleri

I find it interesting that the Maori names are the same for both birds. They were considered sacred after their loud screeching alerted the Te Arawa tribes to the attack of the enemy, Napuhi, preventing the element of surprise on Mokoia Island.

Native birds and bats
The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
NZ birds


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