Coyote Mercury

words, birds and whatever else by James Brush

Watching Ring-billed Gulls in Central Texas

Ring-billed Gull 3
When you grow up with the Navy, you get used to certain things, particularly salty air and the cries of gulls. Things not easily come by during a typical day in central Texas. Thank goodness for the Ring-billed Gulls, then, that come to the lake near our house every winter.

My gull fix is only a short bike ride away, even if I drove the other day.

I ignored the other birds, ignored everything, focused on the mass of white specks floating on the sparkling water.

flash of white
against the blue
plunges into cold

Ring-billed Gull 1

I can watch gulls for hours. I love the way they fly, so graceful. Lazy one minute, and diving for a meal the next.

Watching gulls is watching wind come alive.

wind takes form
substance, shape
a gull streaks across

Ring-billed Gull 2

Cold air riders come to spend another central Texas inland winter, they bob on the surface, cry and take flight.

The wind pushes them around a bit, but it’s all for show.

They are in control.

Ring-billed Gull 4

a cry, a soaring gull
comes up with lunch
i come back for more


  1. These are some great pictures! I have trouble photographing birds in flight, but these are really crisp.

  2. Thank you. I have a hard time with it too, but sometimes I get lucky. I deleted the 100 or so out of focus, blurred and badly exposed ones.

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