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The Daily Bucket is a regular feature of the Backyard Science group. It is a place to note of any observations you have made of the world around you. Rain, sun, wind...insects, birds, flowers...meteorites, rocks...seasonal changes...all are worthy additions to the bucket. Please let us know what is going on around you in a comment. Include, as close as is comfortable for you, where you are located. Each note is a record that we can refer to in the future as we try to understand the patterns that are quietly unwinding around us.
Typical encounter out on the bay, a gull looking for a freebie. Gulls are experts at that, watching the other birds in case there's a bit of food they can steal. Opportunism is a part of their feeding strategy, lurking or even attacking.
In this half-minute encounter, a Glaucous-Winged gull saw a Hooded Merganser feeding, waited for it to surface, and jumped on it, hoping to grab whatever fish it might have caught below the surface. Merganser dives again, gull does a touch-and-go. Merganser surfaces again, see the gull dive bombing him and skitters away across the surface. No hard feelings apparently afterward, but the gull hangs about, alert for an easy lunch.
To the hard-working ducks in the bay, gulls are an ever-present annoyance. I've watched gulls steal food from ducks and oystercatchers, and each other, frequently. I've wondered what proportion of their diet comes that way, and how much of diving ducks or oystercatchers catch is lost to gulls?
This late bucket is open for your nature observations of the day...