Very nice shots...all things considered, you did an excellent job! I have yet to actually capture any decent pics of gulls in flight...and the gods know I've tried! LOL!!! Neither the auto focus on my Sony or my Oluympus would actually keep up with birds in flight. I'm looking forward to trying it again when the new camera gets here (can ya tell I'm a little excited? LOL!).
Keeping the highlights in check is most certainly an issue...the only thing I can think of to suggest there is to try shooting on a more overcast day instead of bright sunshine. A polarizer might help, but probably not much.
I think my only gripe is the framing...again I think that first image could use a crop and the second image would have been really sweet if you had of gotten it more centered (and not cut off the rear birds feet). I love the angle on the third one, but yea, those highlights are a tad hot.
Anyways, again, great job!