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Bird name:

Arctic Tern

Sterna paradisaea

Order

CHARADRIIFORMES

Family

Terns (Sternidae)

BTO 2

AE

BTO 5

ARCTE

Euring 5

06160
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ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

UK Conservation Status


Amber Status

European Conservation Status


Conservation Description


"The Arctic Tern breeds in coastal areas of the UK, Isle of Man, and Ireland, and is also a common passage migrant. It has an ""Amber"" status because of recent declines in its UK breeding population.

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PHOTO SHARING AND DISCUSSION

BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

SUMMARY

Overview

Arctic Tern: Medium-sized, graceful seabird with long, pointed wings, thin, dagger-like bill, and elongated outer tail feathers. Mostly light gray body, wings with narrow, black strip on outer edge of flight feathers, and black cap. Short, red legs and red bill. Has longest migration of any bird.


Range and Habitat

Arctic Tern: Summer breeder in northern England, Scotland, north Wales, Isle of Man and Ireland. Passes through central England on route to breeding grounds. Found in coastal areas and inland reservoirs. Spends winter months in Antarctica.

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SONGS AND CALLS

Jean Roche Sound

Arctic Tern 3

  • Title: Arctic Tern 3
  • Description: Female begging for a fish.
  • Recordist: Jean Roche
  • Date Imported: "February 7, 2011"
  • Location: uk

Arctic Tern 4

  • Title: Arctic Tern 4
  • Description: Male arriving at nest.
  • Recordist: Jean Roche
  • Date Imported: "February 7, 2011"
  • Location: uk

Arctic Tern 5

  • Title: Arctic Tern 5
  • Description: Pair calling in flight.
  • Recordist: Jean Roche
  • Date Imported: "February 7, 2011"
  • Location: uk

Arctic Tern 6

  • Title: Arctic Tern 6
  • Description: Various calls from a breeding colony.
  • Recordist: Jean Roche
  • Date Imported: "February 7, 2011"
  • Location: uk

Voice Text

"tr-tee-ar"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • The Arctic Tern is well known for its long yearly migration. Its travel from its Arctic breeding grounds to its wintering grounds off of Antarctica may cover perhaps 40,000 km (25,000 mi), and is the farthest yearly journey of any bird.
  • This tern can live to be at least 34 years old. It usually does not begin to breed until it is three or four years old.
  • Most return to the area where they were hatched, often to the same colony. One individual, however, was banded as a chick in northwestern Russia and found two years later in eastern Greenland.
  • A group of terns are collectively known as a "U" or a "ternery" of terns.

RELATED BIRDS

RANGE MAP

Range Map for Arctic Tern

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Gary Owen Dick

Artist

Yury Lisyak

HELP ME IDENTIFY A BIRD

BACKYARD BIRDING

BIRDS AND BIRDING

.
CapX
The area on top of the head of the bird.
Flight feathersX
Located on the wing, and collectively called remiges (singular, remex). The long stiff feathers are subdivided into two major groups based on the location and are called primaries and secondaries.
Outer tail feathersX
The tail feathers farthest from the center.
CrownX
The crown is the top part of the birds head.
4 and 6 letter alpha codesX

The four letter common name alpha code is is derived from the first two letters of the common first name and the first two letters of common last name. The six letter species name alpha code is derived from the first three letters of the scientific name (genus) and the first three letters of the scientific name (species). See (1) below for the rules used to create the codes..

Four-letter (for English common names) and six-letter (for scientific names) species alpha codes were developed by Pyle and DeSante (2003, North American Bird-Bander 28:64-79) to reflect A.O.U. taxonomy and nomenclature (A.O.U. 1998) as modified by Supplements 42 (Auk 117:847-858, 2000) and 43 (Auk 119:897-906, 2002). The list has been updated by Pyle and DeSante to reflect changes reported by the A.O.U from 2003 through 2006.

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ITIS CodesX

The Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS) was established in the mid-1990 s as a cooperative project among several federal agencies to improve and expand upon taxonomic data (known as the NODC Taxonomic Code) maintained by the National Oceanographic Data Center (NODC), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

To find the ITIS page for a bird species go to the ITIS web site advanced search and report page at http://www.itis.gov/advanced_search.html. You can enter the TSN or the common name of the bird. It will return the ITIS page for that bird. Another way to obtain the ITIS page is to use the Google search engine. Enter the string ITIS followed by the taxonomic ID, for example "ITIS 178041" will return the page for the Allen's Hummingbird.

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Parts of a Standing birdX
Head Feathers and MarkingsX
Parts of a Flying birdX