Western Gulls

Western Gulls (HM2GQV)

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N 37° 49.588', W 122° 25.298'

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Nursery on the Parade Ground

Transformed from an army parade ground to a playground for the children of federal prison guards, the expanse of concrete straight ahead is now a nesting ground for Alcatraz's vast colony of western gulls. Each winter, up to 1,100 pairs of western gulls return to breed and raise their young.

Around February, the territorial, lifelong partners arrive on the island ready to fight, if necessary, for the same nesting spots they've had year after year. Using bits of vegetation and man-made debris, they build circular nests on the concrete. In April and May, for approximately 28 days, they incubate their eggs. In June, 2,000 to 3,000 chicks hatch and raise their voices, creating a screeching racket that will continue over the parade ground through July and August.
Placed ByGolden Gate National Recreation Area, National Park Service
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Monday, May 13th, 2019 at 8:01am PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)10S E 550898 N 4186718
Decimal Degrees37.82646667, -122.42163333
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 37° 49.588', W 122° 25.298'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds37° 49' 35.28" N, 122° 25' 17.88" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Closest Postal AddressAt or near , ,
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