A published national survey of red-billed gulls (Larus novaehollandiae scopulinus) in 2015 recorded about 28,000 nests in New Zealand, a 30% decrease in 50 years. We compared nest numbers in 2020 at Otago, south-eastern South Island, with published records for 1992–2011 and 2015. In contrast to trends further north, numbers at Otago have increased but the average annual rate of increase dropped from 6–10% for 1992–2011 to 2% for 2011–2020. Citizen science provided a valuable input in 2020 with records of breeding at previously undocumented urban locations. The about 6,000 nests at Otago in 2020 probably account for 20% of the national total.