How long do seagulls live?

Seagulls, also known as gulls, are seabirds that belong to the Laridae family. Their closest relatives are the terns even though they have some links to skimmers, auks, and waders.

The lifespan of seagulls depends on species but on average, seagulls live for 10-20 years. Large-white-headed gulls are known to be the most long-lived birds and can live for up to 29 years.

Index

    Seagulls lifespan

    How long do seagulls live in the wild?

    According to some experts, seagulls have a natural lifespan of about 20 years and there were many records of seagulls that have reached 25 years or even more. But, the unique behavior of these birds and their habits can sometimes cost their lives.

    Namely, when seagulls live in the wild, it is not uncommon for them to be caught and eaten by other animals like foxes, weasels, sharks and cats. This is one of the reasons why their lifespan is so different.

    There are many birds that don’t reach the age of 1 year while others live 25 years. It is good to mention that the first year of their life is critical. Most of the seagulls that pass the first year will experience natural death.

    Finally, let’s not forget that different species of seagulls have a different life expectancy. Ring-billed seagulls usually leave between 12 and 15 years while herring seagulls can reach 30 or more.

    How long do seagulls live in captivity?

    Naturally, the seagulls that live in captivity have a longer life span. When they are kept in zoos and similar facilities they usually receive all the necessary care they need. This means that they are getting enough food and water and have enough space to exercise.

    How long do seagulls live?

    In addition, seagulls in captivity don’t have to worry about all the predators we have mentioned before. The young seagulls get extra care. On top of that, when they are in captivity they don’t have to deal with the consequences of extreme weather which are another thing that lowers their lifespan.

    Related posts: How long do pigeons live? | How long do canaries live? | How long do ducks live?

    Where do seagulls live?

    Seagulls are found all over the world even in some parts of Antarctica and the Arctic region. Although we are talking about seabirds, in some cases seagulls are found deep in the mainland.

    What do seagulls eat?

    Seagulls can eat almost anything: fish, dump, dead animals, garbage or litter.

    How much do seagulls measure?

    The little gulls is 6.6 inches (17 cm) tall while the largest seagull is 29.5 inches (75 cm) tall. A large seagull can measure 26.7 inches (68 cm) from beak to tail and their wingspread is about 29.5 inches (75 cm).

    How much do seagulls weigh?

    The smallest seagull weighs around 4.2 ounces (120 g). The great-beaked gull is the largest seagull that weighs around 3.8 pounds (1.75 kg).

    Seagulls species

    Since these birds have existed on our planet for many millennia it is quite natural that there are different seagull species out there. In fact, there are more than 20 species of these birds that live on every continent.

    Seagulls reproduction and life cycle

    Seagulls have one partner for life (they are monogamous birds). Breeding seagull pairs start courting late March and April. Early May is nest building. They lay a clutch of 3 eggs early May and hatch chicks in June. Seagulls are precocial, meaning that their chick hatch sighted, able to walk and downy.

    Seagulls lifespan

    The chicks are brooded by the male and female seagull for up to 2 weeks, where they grow bigger enough to start looking for small portions of food and return to the nest when the parent calls.

    After this, the seagull develops contour feathers, starts exercising how to fly and eventually gain the strength and ability to fly far above the waters and forage it. It takes time for seagulls to master full foraging above the water.

    Gulls are very social creatures. Once they establish a nesting roof, many seagulls move into that area. They become many in numbers till they establish a colony.

    Facts about pigeons

    Seagulls and cleverness

    What many people don’t know is that seagulls are actually very clever birds. It was proven that they have the ability to learn new things throughout their lives and they can remember things for a long time.

    As a matter of fact, some of them are able to pass their knowledge and behaviors to other seagulls. They can also drop food on rocks to crack it and eat the content.

    Seagulls and unique glands

    Another thing that is interesting about these birds is that they can consume both salt and fresh water thanks to their unique glands.

    Seagulls and noise

    Seagulls cause nuisance through their noise and to a point that property owners seek intervention to have the birds removed near them.

    Are seagulls a pest?

    These medium to large birds are known for many things. For example, many people consider them pests because of their strong appetite. They are prepared to do anything to get to the food.

    1. Derek Stocker says:

      I have been feeding a pair of seagulls that visit me daily and sometimes twice a day for a damp crust of bread or if I am eating in the garden, something off the plate.
      This pair seem to be the same pair I was feeding ten years ago but I notice they have the brown marks just visible that young birds have, could it be a second pair at all?
      They certainly look the same but why do they seem to have the head markings slightly visible of a young bird?
      I love them although they are noisy and "twitter" at me as if a baby bird seeking food from its parent, they turned up a couple of years ago with a brown marked "baby" but when feeding them I had to make sure the baby was fed separately from the older birds as they would steal food from it even though it seemed to be their baby!
      I find them interesting and entertaining and they seem not to bother my neighbours at all especially as once they are fed they fly away and seemingly only make twittering noises when they arrive wanting to be fed.
      I sit in the garden in the summer and just adore watching these fabulous creatures wheeling and turning and sometimes seem to be at about 150 feet high or more and the way they seem to be together in the air and sometimes you will see what I assume is a pair of seagulls with a darker young one high in the sky.
      I am told they attack other birds such as pigeons and smaller birds which I do not like although never seen such a thing, I know there is predation of all living things, I just don't want to see it.
      I love to see hawks flying around very high in the sky but I have to ignore what they do to live but, such a wonderful show of nature and doing what they do best.

      1. Stephen says:

        Great write up Derek! I'm no expert but I believe a gull's plumage can change according to the season so you may have just noticed this change on the gulls that come to visit you. I'm glad that you find beauty in these birds, I think they are fascinating although a great many people don't appreciate their presence. They, as all living creatures are just doing what comes naturally to them. I hope that you continue to appreciate and be visited by these fabulous birds which have the ability to brave the oceans of this planet. They really are remarkable, and I have great respect for these adaptable birds and the incredible lives they live.

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    Go up