Atlantic Yellow-legged Gulls: Summary of Terminology (December 2002)
atlantis -- The Yellow-legged Gulls occupying the Atlantic coasts of Macronesia, Morocco and Iberia (with the exception of Cantabria and Pais Vasco in northern Spain). Divided into:
Southern atlantis (Southern Atlantic Yellow-legged Gull) -- Canaries, Madeira and at least southern Morocco
Iberian atlantis (Iberian Atlantic Yellow-legged Gull) -- Portugal, south west and north west Spain.
Azorean atlantis (Azorean Atlantic Yellow-legged Gull) -- considered separately only because not enough is known about it to classify it more precisely. Biometrics and mantle colour indicate that it is part of the atlantis complex.
cantabricans (Cantabrican Atlantic Yellow-legged Gull) -- The Yellow-legged Gulls occupying the Atlantic coast of northern Spain (Cantabria and Pais Vasco) and south west France near the Spanish border. Very like argenteus and possibly better treated as such.
michahellis (Mediterranean Yellow-legged Gull) -- The Yellow-legged Gulls occupying the Mediterranean.
atlantis/michahellis intersection -- The Yellow-legged Gulls occupying the zone where the Atlantic and the Mediterranean meet in the Straits of Gibraltar, Andalucia and Tanger.
Southern atlantis was Dark Atlantic Yellow-legged Gull.
Iberian atlantis was West Portugal/North west Spain cline.
Following statistical analysis of wingtip patterns, gulls from southern Portugal and south west Spain are now placed with Iberian atlantis rather than with Southern atlantis.
© Copyright Nick Rossiter 2002.
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