Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Wondering Wednesday

Ring-billed Gull
Lock & Dam 14 in Pleasant Valley, Iowa
February 2010

This poor gull is missing a foot!

This was really just a flight practice shot for me at the lock and dam last weekend. I snapped two pictures in a row of this gull as it captured a fish. Eagle activity was slow to stagnant last weekend for me so I focused on what was at the lock and Dam, Ringed-billed Gull. If I had realized this one was footless in flight I would have tried to follow it for more photographs. There were hundreds of gulls here. I'm sure even if I had known and tried to track this gull it would have gotten lost in the mix anyway. This was an unexpected, fascinating capture for a slow weekend at the lock and dam.

I do wonder what happened to this poor gull.
How does a gull lose a foot first of all and then continue to survive. Poor thing.


  1. Quite amazing that he survived losing a foot. But seems to be doing ok - quite a nice catch he has!! Love these shots!!

  2. Nice shots. A few years ago, a mallard flew into the backyard and it was missing a foot. He waddled along like a peg leg, but it fed from under the birdfeeder and flew away along with the flock. A lot of ducklings or gulls get nipped at by snapping turtles when young, and if lucky, get away, sometimes missing a foot.

  3. oh the action shots!

  4. Nice shots of him catching the fish.

  5. I am still amazed by this seagull. I didn't have a chance to see how this gull fared on land. Probably the peg legged wabble you got to see with the ducks Janet. I hadn't thought of a snapping turtle as a possibility. My thought was it fell asleep in the ice and was frozen in place. I thought maybe it lost the foot taking flight. Silly I know but that was my thought.
    I really like that last shot best also, thanks everyone for the nice comments.