The Status of Glaucous Gulls <i>Larus hyperboreus</i> in the Circumpolar Arctic

Keywords: Glaucous Gull, Larus hyperboreus, Arctic, population status, population trends, monitoring, conservation concerns


The entire world population of the Glaucous Gull Larus hyperboreus breeds in the circumpolar Arctic. Some local populations appear to be declining significanty. In this paper, we summarize the current state of knowledge on Glaucous Gull populations and trends. The total Arctic population is estimated at approximately 171 000 breeding pairs (> 342 000 breeding individuals) distributed among at least 2700 colonies (many not documented). Population declines may be attributable to egg harvest, contaminants, or food shortages, but other factors operating outside the breeding season should not be excluded. We recommend collaborative conservation efforts that will include better population estimates in most countries, as well as standardized monitoring programs.