- 19.7–23.6 in
- 45.3–53.9 in
- 28.9–38.8 oz
- Goéland arctique, Goéland de Kumlien (French)
- Gaviota del ártico (Spanish)
- The Iceland Gull is divided into two subspecies. The western form known as "Kumlien's Gull," breeds in Canada and shows variable amounts of dark in the wingtips. The form that breeds in Greenland and winters from there to Europe, has very little or no dark in its wingtips.
- The Iceland Gull and the Thayer's Gull show many similarities and may be the same species. A range of darkness in the wingtips can be seen from fully dark ones in the western Arctic to fully white in eastern Canada, with lots of variation in between.
- The oldest recorded Iceland Gull was at least 4 years, 8 months old, when it was seen alive in the wild in eastern Canada and identified by its band.
Breeds in coastal colonies on rocky precipices of steep cliffs from low to high Arctic, normally facing fjords or sounds, though occasionally up to several kilometers inland. Winters along shores of salt water and less often freshwater lakes and rivers.
Fish, carrion, offal in harbors, marine invertebrates, occasionally eggs and young of other birds; some terrestrial plants, algae, and berries in late summer.
- Clutch Size
- 1–3 eggs
- Egg Description
- Pale grayish brown, spotted and blotched with dark brown.
- Condition at Hatching
- Alert and mobile. Covered in cryptically colored down.
Shallow bowl of moss and grass, placed on narrow cliff ledge.
Picks food off surface of water, food typically swallowed while flying. Ternlike searching flight and fishing behavior.
There is little information on population trends of Iceland Gull. The North American Waterbird Conservation Plan estimates a continental breeding population of more than 100,000 birds, rates the species an 11 out of 20 on the Continental Concern Score, and lists it as a Species of Low Concern. Iceland Gull is not on the 2014 State of the Birds Watch List.
- Snell, R. R. 2002. Iceland Gull (Larus glaucoides) and Thayer's Gull (Larus thayeri). In The Birds of North America, No. 699 (A. Poole and F. Gill, eds.). The Birds of North America, Inc., Philadelphia, PA.
- Kushlan, J.A., et al. 2002. Waterbird conservation for the Americas: the North American Waterbird Conservation Plan, version 1. Waterbird Conservation for the Americas. Washington, DC.
- North American Bird Conservation Initiative, U.S. Committee. 2014. State of the Birds 2014 Report. U.S. Department of Interior, Washington, DC.
- USGS Patuxent Wildlife Research Center. 2015. Longevity records of North American Birds.