“In January 2013, an individual Black-backed Gull (Larus dominicanus, Maori name: Karoro) was engrossed in an evening bath at a secluded corner of a freshwater inlet near the Estuary of Avon/Heathcote, South Island, New Zealand. It repeatedly dipped its head in the water and brushed its breast feathers with its beak. Unlike the Red-billed Gull (Larus novaehollandiae), this species prefers more privacy at bath time. Nevertheless, its partner was close by and keeping watch. I, on the other hand, could only observe from a respectful distance.
“A brief video clip of this bathing beauty (in slow motion) can be previewed above.”
Dr. Leong Tzi Ming
17th February 2013