AskDefine | Define gull

Dictionary Definition



1 a person who is gullible and easy to take advantage of [syn: chump, fool, mark, patsy, fall guy, sucker, soft touch, mug]
2 mostly white aquatic bird having long pointed wings and short legs [syn: seagull, sea gull]


1 make a fool or dupe of [syn: fool, befool]
2 fool or hoax; "The immigrant was duped because he trusted everyone"; "You can't fool me!" [syn: dupe, slang, befool, cod, fool, put on, take in, put one over, put one across]

User Contributed Dictionary



  • /'gʌl/
  • Rhymes: -ʌl


  1. A seabird of the genus Larus or of the family Laridae.
  2. A cheating trick; a fraud.
    • One easily cheated; a dupe.





  1. To deceive or cheat
  2. To mislead
  3. To trick and defraud

Related terms





gull s
  1. gold
  2. (in proverbs) richness, money, livestock
  3. gold medal, first place (sports, etc.)







no-noun-nu gull

Derived terms

Extensive Definition

Gulls (often informally Seagulls) are birds in the family Laridae. They are most closely related to the terns (family Sternidae) and only distantly related to auks, and skimmers, and more distantly to the waders. Most gulls belong to the large genus Larus.
They are typically medium to large birds, usually grey or white, often with black markings on the head or wings. They have stout, longish bills, and webbed feet. Gull species range in size from the Little Gull, at 120 g (4.2 oz) and 29 cm (11.5 inches), to the Great Black-backed Gull, at 1.75 kg (3.8 lbs) and 76 cm (30 inches).
Most gulls, particularly Larus species, are ground nesting carnivores, which will take live food or scavenge opportunistically. The live food often includes crabs and small fish. Apart from the kittiwakes, gulls are typically coastal or inland species, rarely venturing far out to sea. The large species take up to four years to attain full adult plumage, but two years is typical for small gulls.
Gulls — the larger species in particular — are resourceful and highly-intelligent birds, demonstrating complex methods of communication and a highly-developed social structure; for example, many gull colonies display mobbing behaviour, attacking and harassing would-be predators and other intruders. In addition, certain species (e.g. the Herring Gull) have exhibited tool use behaviour. Many species of gull have learned to co-exist successfully with humans and have thrived in human habitats. Others rely on kleptoparasitism to get their food.
Two terms are in common usage among gull enthusiasts for subgroupings of the gulls:
Hybridisation between species of gull occurs quite frequently, although to varying degrees depending on the species involved (see Hybridisation in gulls). The taxonomy of the large white-headed gulls is particularly complicated.
In common usage, members of various gull species are often referred to as sea gulls or seagulls. This name is used by the layman to refer to a common local species or all gulls in general, and has no fixed taxonomic meaning.
The American Ornithologists' Union combines Sternidae, Stercorariidae, and Rhynchopidae as subfamilies in the family Laridae, but recent research indicates that this is incorrect.

List of gulls in taxonomic order

Genus Larus
Genus Rissa
Genus Pagophila
Genus Rhodostethia
Genus Xema
Genus Creagrus
The Laridae are known from fossil evidence since the Early Oligocene, some 30-33 mya. A fossil gull from the Middle to Late Miocene of Cherry County, USA is placed in the prehistoric genus Gaviota; apart from this and the undescribed Early Oligocene fossil, all prehistoric species were tentatively assigned to the modern genus Larus. Among those of them that have been confirmed as gulls, "Larus" elegans and "L." totanoides from the Late Oligocene/Early Miocene of SE France have since been separated in Laricola.




  • Grant, Peter J. (1986) Gulls: a guide to identification ISBN 0-85661-044-5
  • Howell, Steve N. G. and Jon Dunn (2007) Gulls of the Americas ISBN 0-618-72641-1
  • Olsen, Klaus Malling & Larsson, Hans (1995): Terns of Europe and North America. Christopher Helm, London. ISBN 0-7136-4056-1

External links

gull in Breton: Gouelan
gull in Catalan: Laridae
gull in Danish: Måge
gull in German: Möwen
gull in Esperanto: Mevo
gull in Estonian: Kajaklased
gull in Spanish: Gaviota
gull in Basque: Kaio
gull in Persian: مرغ نوروزی
gull in French: Goéland
gull in Western Frisian: Seefûgels
gull in Scottish Gaelic: Faoileag
gull in Korean: 갈매기
gull in Croatian: Galebi
gull in Ido: Muevo
gull in Italian: Laridae
gull in Hebrew: שחף
gull in Swahili (macrolanguage): Shakwe
gull in Lithuanian: Kiriniai
gull in Hungarian: Sirályfélék
gull in Dutch: Meeuwen (vogels)
gull in Japanese: カモメ族 (Sibley)
gull in Norwegian: Måser
gull in Norwegian Nynorsk: Måsefamilien
gull in Narom: Mauve
gull in Occitan (post 1500): Laridae
gull in Polish: Mewy
gull in Portuguese: Gaivota (ave)
gull in Russian: Чайковые
gull in Sicilian: Laridae
gull in Finnish: Lokit
gull in Swedish: Måsar och trutar
gull in Thai: นกนางนวล
gull in Turkish: Martı
gull in Walloon: Måwete
gull in Chinese: 鷗

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

babe, bamboozle, beat, befool, beguile, beguile of, betray, bilk, bluff, boob, bunco, burn, cajole, cheat, cheat on, chicane, chisel, chouse, chouse out of, chump, cinch, circumvent, cog, cog the dice, con, conjure, cozen, credulous person, crib, cull, deceive, defraud, delude, diddle, do in, do out of, double-cross, dupe, easy mark, easy pickings, euchre, fall guy, finagle, fish, flam, fleece, flimflam, fob, fool, forestall, fudge, gammon, get around, gobe-mouches, gouge, greener, greenhorn, greeny, gudgeon, gyp, have, hoax, hocus, hocus-pocus, hoodwink, hornswaggle, humbug, infatuate, innocent, juggle, leadpipe cinch, let down, mock, monkey, mulct, outmaneuver, outreach, outsmart, outwit, overreach, pack the deal, patsy, pigeon, play one false, plaything, practice fraud upon, prize sap, pushover, put on, put something over, rook, sap, saphead, scam, schlemiel, screw, sell gold bricks, shave, shortchange, sitting duck, snow, stack the cards, stick, sting, stooge, string along, stultify, sucker, swindle, take a dive, take in, thimblerig, throw a fight, toy, trick, trusting soul, two-time, victim, victimize
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