Is this a common practice and I just didn't get the memo?
It is a common enough practice that you'd better get used to it
On my healer I'll get a bit ridiculous and gather in the middle of pulls, especially if I see I'm the only one with the skill. I usually keep it down to one gather at the end of each pull, which is just enough to not fall behind, and I don't mind when people do that on either of my toons.
I am exactly the same way, down to scavenging during pulls
. And yes, I usually limit myself to only gather one thing and move on.