Not So Common

Isle of May National Nature Reserve

1 Common tern Up close; Common Tern with its dark tip to bill

2 Common tern Long legs another feature; this a pair nesting on Isle of May

3 Common tern chick Chick waits for its next food delivery 

Friday 17th April comments: As mentioned in the previous blog post, terns can benefit from man-made tern terrace structures and it’s not just Sandwich Terns, as the smaller terns also benefit including Common and Arctic Terns.

Common Terns are lesser known (in Isle of May terms) compared to their cousins the Arctic Tern, as the small numbers which nest can only be found away from the main public areas. The species has a circumpolar distribution and is strongly migratory, wintering in coastal tropical and subtropical regions. They are similar in size, structure and colour as the Arctic Tern but for one main feature, their beaks (known as bills). The bill of a Common Tern is mostly red (similar to…

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