The pale button eyes of this gull give it a somewhat fearsome appearance. Breeding adult’s head is the color of milk chocolate, lightening towards the bill. Non-breeding and first-winter birds have a dark ear patch and faint traces of the dark hood. All plumages may be confused with smaller Black-headed Gull, but note pale eyes and more extensive black on the primaries in all plumages. Breeds on high-altitude lakes on the Tibetan Plateau and winters on marshes, estuaries, lakes and rivers, most often in coastal areas.