Herring Gulls (Larus argentatus) have been banded in large numbers in eastern North America for over a century, and much has been learned about their movements and non-breeding distributions. To see if changes have occurred in the non-breeding distribution of Herring Gulls, encounters of birds banded as chicks at the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve in eastern Newfoundland, Canada, were examined. Extensive banding activities occurred during 1966–1978 and most recently during 1999–2013 at this site. Overall, the patterns of encounter distributions have not changed greatly between the two time periods, in spite of the changes to the climate, marine ecosystems and land-use practices in the last 40 years (1966–1978 to 1999–2013). It appears that the migration habits of Herring Gulls breeding in Newfoundland are well established, and a northward shift in the non-breeding distribution, like that seen in several coastal bird species, was not apparent.
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Vol. 39 • No. sp1