American Birding Podcast



#ABArare – Ross’s Gull – Iowa

While Snowy Owls are staging a major invasion over eastern parts of the ABA Area, another visitor from the North is delighting birders in Iowa. A Code 3 Ross’s Gull was found at Lake Red Rock, west of Pella and southeast of Des Moines, by Aaron Brees on December 1.

Ross's Gull

To get to Lake Red Rock, take Hwy 163 east from Des Moines, then Hwy 14 south, and next turn east (left) onto County Road G28. It’s been seen at the boat ramp east of Cordova Park. If you get to the Roberts Creek Causeway, you’ve gone too far. Brees created a map showing the location, which is available here.

This is the fourth record for Iowa and the third for Lake Red Rock (previous sightings in 1993 and 1997). It was still present through December 2. There is also a Little Gull at the lake, seen on December 2 by looking towards the dam from Whitebreast Point. Keep an eye on the IA-Bird listserv for updates.