I recently returned from a trip to the Venice area and while there stumbled upon what I believe was an immature jaeger on Venice beach.  The bird was associating with laughing gulls and I was able to approach within 10 feet.  The bird was generally small-headed and large-bodied and considerably larger than the laughing gulls.  From what I have been able to glean from photos it was probably either an immature Parasitic or Pomarine.  I tend to favor the latter, but having no experience with jaegers in Florida was wondering what the general consensus might be.  The overall tones of the bird were a warm brown with whitish markings throughout the back.  The face had that darkish frown-like expression. The neck and belly were mostly white with faint buffy streaking across the breast.  Legs were greyish-blue but were actually rater two-toned- with lighter patches -rather like they were "peeling".  When the bird took flight (making a pass at a laughing gull) I could see a few cream-colored primaries streaming from the wingtips.  The wings were rather long and pointed; the tail seemed wedge-shaped.  This bird also was chased by another pair of laughing gulls that were not happy with the bird's presence.

As I said, I don't know the history of occurence of jaegers on-shore in Florida, and would be interested to hear from birders in the area.  I am currently back home in New Jersey- and wondering about that bird!

(as a side note, after finding 14 Black-bellied Whilstling Ducks in North Port I had my sister call the sighting in to Venice Audobon because of their "rareness" noted in Sibley.  I guess 8 or 9 years can make a big difference in distribution trends)

Thanks for your attention and help.

Brian Schiefer
Hazlet NJ 

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