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Published Sep. 9, 2009

(ran South, Beach, Seminole)

A laughing gull hangs out at Fort DeSoto Park last week. At right, a ship goes out to the gulf off Fort DeSoto as pelicans and seagulls feast on a school of fish. Although some folks see gulls as annoying, beaches just wouldn't be the same without them. It happens to be egg laying time. The colonies in Tampa Bay are huge - up to 50,000 pairs. "Their loves are conducted with extreme pomposity," according to an Audubon guide. Males "strut and bow to the females, throwing their head backwards, like all other gulls, although in a less degree and with a less curious motion than cormorants."