• • •Ring-billed Gulls are among the most common on the coast, found not only by the shore but in inland parks, farms, lakes, parking lots and landfills.
Ring-billed Gulls have become comfortable around people, frequenting restaurant parking lots and garbage dumps, as well as their more natural habitat along beaches and fields. They can hover almost at a standstill, prepared to take food tossed into the air. In some ways they are the goats of the air, thriving on almost anything from fish and insects to french fries.
Ring-billed Gulls winter in the southern United States and Gulf Coast as far south as Mexico. In summer, they typically return to the same breeding location in the far north where they nest in colonies in the hundreds and thousands.
April 19, 2008
A Ring-billed Gull scoured the beach this morning at Galveston Island State Park, sifting through the rubble just past the water line. It was in its second year – white on the bottom but still mottled on the top. Seizing a small clam in its beak, it flew up about 20 feet, hovered, and let it drop. After inspecting the results, it took it up in its beak again, this time to perhaps 40 feet, stopped, and let it fall. The fall cracked the shell and the gull stood above it on the sand picking out a soft breakfast.