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LC
Black-headed Gull Larus ridibundus

IUCN Red List history

Year Category
2012 Least Concern
2009 Least Concern
2008 Least Concern
2004 Least Concern
2000 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1994 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1988 Lower Risk/Least Concern

Species attributes

Migratory status full migrant Forest dependency Does not normally occur in forest
Land mass type   Average mass -

Distribution

  Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 16,700,000
Extent of Occurrence non-breeding (km2) 28,000,000
Number of locations -
Fragmentation -

Population & trend

  Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals poor Estimated 2009
Population trend Decreasing -
Number of subpopulations - - -
Largest subpopulation - - -
Generation length (yrs) 9.6 - - -
Population justification: The global population is estimated to number c.4,800,000-8,900,000 individuals (Wetlands International 2006), while national population estimates include: > c.1,000 individuals on migration and > c.1,000 wintering individuals in China; c.1,000-10,000 individuals on migration and > c.1,000 wintering individuals in Taiwan; > c.1,000 individuals on migration and > c.1,000 wintering individuals in Korea; < c.10,000 individuals on migration and c.1,000-10,000 wintering individuals in Japan and c.10,000-1 million breeding pairs and > c.1,000 individuals on migration in Russia (Brazil 2009).
Trend justification: The overall population trend is decreasing, although some populations have unknown trends (Wetlands International 2006). This species has undergone a large and statistically significant increase over the last 40 years in North America (361% increase over 40 years, equating to a 46.6% increase per decade; data from Breeding Bird Survey and/or Christmas Bird Count: Butcher and Niven 2007) Note, however, that these surveys cover less than 50% of the species's range in North America.

Country/Territory distribution

Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Breeding Non-breeding Passage Resident
Afghanistan Native Extant     Yes  
Albania Native Extant   Yes    
Algeria Native Extant        
Angola Vagrant Extant        
Antigua and Barbuda Native Extant        
Armenia Native Extant Yes      
Australia Vagrant Extant        
Austria Native Extant       Yes
Azerbaijan Native Extant       Yes
Bahamas Vagrant Extant        
Bahrain Native Extant   Yes Yes  
Bangladesh Native Extant        
Barbados Native Extant        
Belarus Native Extant       Yes
Belgium Native Extant       Yes
Benin Native Extant        
Bermuda (to UK) Native Extant        
Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba (to Netherlands) Native Extant        
Bosnia and Herzegovina Native Extant       Yes
Botswana Vagrant Extant        
Brunei Vagrant Extant        
Bulgaria Native Extant       Yes
Burkina Faso Native Extant        
Burundi Vagrant Extant        
Cambodia Native Extant        
Cameroon Vagrant Extant        
Canada Native Extant       Yes
Cape Verde Native Extant        
Chad Vagrant Extant        
China (mainland) Native Extant   Yes    
Congo, The Democratic Republic of the Vagrant Extant        
Côte d'Ivoire Native Extant        
Croatia Native Extant       Yes
Cuba Vagrant Extant        
Curaçao (to Netherlands) Native Extant        
Cyprus Native Extant   Yes    
Czech Republic Native Extant       Yes
Denmark Native Extant     Yes Yes
Djibouti Native Extant        
Dominica Native Extant        
Egypt Native Extant        
Eritrea Native Extant        
Estonia Native Extant       Yes
Ethiopia Native Extant        
Faroe Islands (to Denmark) Native Extant       Yes
Finland Native Extant     Yes Yes
France Native Extant     Yes Yes
French Guiana Native Extant        
Gambia Native Extant        
Georgia Native Extant       Yes
Germany Native Extant     Yes Yes
Ghana Native Extant        
Gibraltar (to UK) Native Extant   Yes    
Greece Native Extant     Yes Yes
Greenland (to Denmark) Native Extant       Yes
Grenada Vagrant Extant        
Guadeloupe (to France) Native Extant        
Guam (to USA) Native Extant   Yes    
Guinea Vagrant Extant        
Guinea-Bissau Native Extant        
Hong Kong (China) Native Extant        
Hungary Native Extant     Yes Yes
Iceland Native Extant       Yes
India Native Extant        
Indonesia Native Extant        
Iran, Islamic Republic of Native Extant     Yes Yes
Iraq Native Extant     Yes Yes
Ireland Native Extant       Yes
Israel Native Extant   Yes Yes  
Italy Native Extant       Yes
Japan Native Extant        
Jordan Native Extant   Yes Yes  
Kazakhstan Native Extant Yes      
Kenya Native Extant        
Kuwait Native Extant   Yes Yes  
Kyrgyzstan Native Extant Yes      
Laos Native Extant        
Latvia Native Extant       Yes
Lebanon Native Extant   Yes Yes  
Liberia Vagrant Extant        
Libya Native Extant        
Liechtenstein Native Extant Yes      
Lithuania Native Extant       Yes
Luxembourg Native Extant   Yes    
Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Native Extant       Yes
Malaysia Native Extant        
Maldives Vagrant Extant        
Mali Native Extant        
Malta Native Extant   Yes    
Martinique (to France) Native Extant        
Mauritania Native Extant        
Mexico Native Extant        
Micronesia, Federated States of Native Extant   Yes    
Moldova Native Extant     Yes Yes
Monaco Unknown Extant        
Mongolia Native Extant Yes      
Montenegro Native Extant       Yes
Montserrat (to UK) Native Extant        
Morocco Native Extant        
Myanmar Native Extant        
Nepal Native Extant        
Netherlands Native Extant       Yes
Niger Native Extant        
Nigeria Native Extant        
North Korea Native Extant        
Northern Mariana Islands (to USA) Native Extant   Yes    
Norway Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Oman Native Extant   Yes    
Pakistan Native Extant        
Palau Native Extant   Yes    
Palestinian Authority Territories Native Extant   Yes    
Papua New Guinea Vagrant Extant        
Philippines Native Extant        
Poland Native Extant     Yes Yes
Portugal Native Extant       Yes
Puerto Rico (to USA) Native Extant        
Qatar Native Extant   Yes    
Romania Native Extant     Yes Yes
Russia (Asian) Native Extant Yes      
Russia (Central Asian) Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Russia (European) Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Rwanda Native Extant        
Saudi Arabia Native Extant   Yes Yes  
Senegal Native Extant        
Serbia Native Extant       Yes
Seychelles Vagrant Extant        
Sierra Leone Vagrant Extant        
Singapore Native Extant        
Sint Maarten (to Netherlands) Native Extant        
Slovakia Native Extant     Yes Yes
Slovenia Native Extant     Yes Yes
Somalia Native Extant        
South Africa Vagrant Extant        
South Korea Native Extant        
South Sudan Native Extant   Yes    
Spain Native Extant     Yes Yes
Sri Lanka Native Extant        
St Kitts and Nevis Native Extant        
St Lucia Native Extant        
St Pierre and Miquelon (to France) Native Extant   Yes Yes  
St Vincent and the Grenadines Native Extant        
Sudan Native Extant        
Suriname Native Extant        
Svalbard and Jan Mayen Islands (to Norway) Native Extant Yes      
Sweden Native Extant     Yes Yes
Switzerland Native Extant       Yes
Syria Native Extant   Yes Yes  
Taiwan (China) Native Extant        
Tajikistan Native Extant        
Tanzania Native Extant        
Thailand Native Extant        
Trinidad and Tobago Native Extant        
Tunisia Native Extant        
Turkey Native Extant       Yes
Turkmenistan Native Extant        
Turks and Caicos Islands (to UK) Vagrant Extant        
Uganda Native Extant        
Ukraine Native Extant     Yes Yes
United Arab Emirates Native Extant   Yes    
United Kingdom Native Extant       Yes
USA Native Extant Yes      
Uzbekistan Native Extant Yes      
Vietnam Native Extant        
Virgin Islands (to USA) Native Extant   Yes    
Western Sahara Native Extant        
Yemen Native Extant   Yes Yes  
Zimbabwe Vagrant Extant        

Important Bird Areas where this species has triggered the IBA criteria

Country/Territory IBA Name IBA link
Bulgaria Maritsa-Plovdiv site factsheet
Canada Île a Calculot site factsheet
Canada Île Nue de Mingan site factsheet
Canada Lagune du Havre aux Basques et plage de l'Ouest site factsheet
Canada Quidi Vidi Lake site factsheet
Canada Quoddy Region site factsheet
China (mainland) Aksu River basin site factsheet
China (mainland) Barkol Lake and grassland site factsheet
China (mainland) Bayanbulak and Kaidu River Valley site factsheet
China (mainland) Bosten Lake site factsheet
China (mainland) Desert and wetland from Northern Urumqi to Dabancheng site factsheet
China (mainland) Ebi Nur and Kuytun River site factsheet
China (mainland) Hotan Oasis site factsheet
China (mainland) Lower reaches of Tarim River site factsheet
China (mainland) Markit-Yarkant Oasis site factsheet
China (mainland) Oasis, Desert and Wetland at Mosuowan site factsheet
China (mainland) Qiemo Oasis and Qarqan River site factsheet
China (mainland) Xayar forest and wetland site factsheet
Egypt Lake Manzala site factsheet
Hong Kong (China) Inner Deep Bay and Shenzhen River catchment area site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Anzali Mordab complex site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Arjan Protected Area site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Bandar Kiashar lagoon and mouth of Sefid Rud site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Hamoun-i Sabari and Hamoun-i Hirmand site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Khouran Straits site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Lake Alagol, Lake Ulmagol and Lake Ajigol site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Lake Maharlu site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Miankaleh Peninsula and Gorgan Bay site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Shadegan marshes and tidal mudflats of Khor-al Amaya and Khor Musa site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of South Caspian shore, from Astara to Gomishan site factsheet
Iraq Shatt Al Arab marshes site factsheet
Israel Carmel coast site factsheet
Israel Lake Kinneret and Kinerot site factsheet
Italy Cervia saltpans site factsheet
Italy Punte Alberete and Valle della Canna, Pineta San Vitale and Pialassa della Baiona site factsheet
Kazakhstan Kamysh-Samarskie Lakes site factsheet
Kazakhstan Korgalzhyn State Nature Reserve site factsheet
Kazakhstan Shoshkakol Lakes site factsheet
Kazakhstan Sorbulak Lake System site factsheet
Kazakhstan Terenkol Lake site factsheet
Kazakhstan Zhaltyr Lake site factsheet
Mongolia Taigam Lake site factsheet
Oman Al Batinah coast site factsheet
Oman Khawr Hassan site factsheet
Oman Khawr Shinas and Khawr Liwa site factsheet
Oman Quriyat - Daghmar site factsheet
Oman Ras al Hadd site factsheet
Poland Brzeszcze ponds site factsheet
Poland Druzno lake site factsheet
Poland Lower Skawa River Valley site factsheet
Poland Malopolska Wisla river gap site factsheet
Poland Middle Vistula River Valley site factsheet
Poland Mietkow reservoir site factsheet
Poland Nysa reservoir site factsheet
Poland Siemianowka Reseirvoir site factsheet
Poland Skoki Gravel-Pit site factsheet
Poland Turek Site site factsheet
Poland Upper Wisla River Valley site factsheet
Poland Warta River Mouth site factsheet
Romania Black Sea site factsheet
Romania Buhuşu reservoir - Bacău - Tătărăşti site factsheet
Romania Câmpia Crişurilor site factsheet
Romania Danube Delta site factsheet
Romania Dunăre - Olteniţa site factsheet
Romania Lake Dunăreni site factsheet
Romania Lake Oltina site factsheet
Romania Olteniţa - Ulmeni site factsheet
Romania Suhaia site factsheet
Romania Vedea - Dunăre site factsheet
Russia (Asian) Avacha bay (Khlamovitskiy Wildlife Reserve) site factsheet
Russia (Asian) Kharchinskoye lake site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Blagoveschenskaya (Kulunda lake and vicinity) site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Dvuob'ye site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Lake Gorkoe at village Novotroitskoe site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Lake system near Lotoshnoye village site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Lake Tarutino site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Lower Ob' site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Tarutino Lake site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Upper streams of Ob' river site factsheet
Russia (European) Beglitskaya sand-spit site factsheet
Russia (European) Berezovye islands of Vyborg Bay site factsheet
Russia (European) Delta of the River Don site factsheet
Russia (European) Ptich'ya magistral' area site factsheet
Russia (European) Sitnikovski Reserve site factsheet
Russia (European) Utrish Reserve and adjacent coastal waters site factsheet
Serbia Carska bara site factsheet
Slovenia River Drava site factsheet
Spain Albufera de Valencia marshes site factsheet
Turkey Bosphorus site factsheet
Turkey Gediz Delta site factsheet
United Arab Emirates Khor Dubai site factsheet
Uzbekistan Balykchi Fish Farm site factsheet
Uzbekistan Khorezm Fish Farm and adjacent lakes site factsheet

Habitats & altitude

Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Artificial/Aquatic & Marine Wastewater Treatment Areas suitable non-breeding
Artificial/Terrestrial Arable Land suitable non-breeding
Artificial/Terrestrial Urban Areas suitable non-breeding
Grassland Subtropical/Tropical Seasonally Wet/Flooded suitable non-breeding
Marine Coastal/Supratidal Coastal Sand Dunes suitable breeding
Marine Intertidal Rocky Shoreline suitable breeding
Marine Intertidal Salt Marshes (Emergent Grasses) suitable breeding
Marine Intertidal Sandy Shoreline and/or Beaches, Sand Bars, Spits, Etc suitable breeding
Marine Intertidal Shingle and/or Pebble Shoreline and/or Beaches suitable breeding
Marine Intertidal Tidepools suitable breeding
Marine Neritic Estuaries suitable non-breeding
Marine Neritic Macroalgal/Kelp suitable breeding
Marine Neritic Macroalgal/Kelp suitable non-breeding
Marine Neritic Pelagic suitable breeding
Marine Neritic Pelagic suitable non-breeding
Marine Neritic Seagrass (Submerged) suitable breeding
Marine Neritic Seagrass (Submerged) suitable non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Loose Rock/pebble/gravel suitable breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Loose Rock/pebble/gravel suitable non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Rock and Rocky Reefs suitable breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Rock and Rocky Reefs suitable non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy suitable breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy suitable non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy-Mud suitable breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy-Mud suitable non-breeding
Wetlands (inland) Permanent Freshwater Lakes (over 8ha) suitable non-breeding
Wetlands (inland) Permanent Freshwater Marshes/Pools (under 8ha) suitable non-breeding
Wetlands (inland) Permanent Rivers/Streams/Creeks (includes waterfalls) suitable non-breeding
Wetlands (inland) Seasonal/Intermittent Freshwater Lakes (over 8ha) suitable non-breeding
Wetlands (inland) Seasonal/Intermittent Freshwater Marshes/Pools (under 8ha) suitable non-breeding
Altitude 0 - 0 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Utilisation

Purpose Primary form used Life stage used Source Scale Level Timing
Food (human) Whole Adults and juveniles Wild Subsistence, National Non-trivial Recent
Food (human) Whole Eggs Wild Subsistence, National Non-trivial Recent
Pets Whole Adults and juveniles Wild International Non-trivial Recent
Sport Whole Adults and juveniles Wild Subsistence, National Non-trivial Recent

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2014) Species factsheet: Larus ridibundus. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 26/10/2014. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2014) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 26/10/2014.

This information is based upon, and updates, the information published in BirdLife International (2000) Threatened birds of the world. Barcelona and Cambridge, UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, BirdLife International (2004) Threatened birds of the world 2004 CD-ROM and BirdLife International (2008) Threatened birds of the world 2008 CD-ROM. These sources provide the information for species accounts for the birds on the IUCN Red List.

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife

To contribute to discussions on the evaluation of the IUCN Red List status of Globally Threatened Birds, please visit BirdLife's Globally Threatened Bird Forums.

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Least Concern
Family Laridae (Gulls, Terns, Skimmers)
Species name author Linnaeus, 1766
Population size mature individuals
Population trend Decreasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 16,700,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Summary information on this species