Common Tern  Sterna hirundo

Willen Lakes - 1st June 2013

Photos copyright Jason Chalk

There are many other excellent photos of Common Terns on the Birders Photo Gallery


Broughton Trout Pools, Nr Aylesbury - April/May 2007

Photos copyright Mike Wallen

A pair of Common Terns took up temporary residence at Broughton Trout Pools, allowing these excellent photos to be obtained. 

Little Marlow Gravel Pit - 2005

IMG_4025_400.jpg (19412 bytes)

IMG_4027_300.jpg (13196 bytes)
Photos copyright Adrian Parker

In 2005 11 Common Tern chicks were ringed on the rafts in late June.  Two other chicks were too small to ring and 2-3 more have hatched since.  The colour scheme for 2005 is Yellow/Orange as shown above.   The ringing was again carried out by Mick McQuaid and Mike Collard.

For reference the colour rings used in the last few years at Little Marlow have been :-

2002	16 young ringed			BTO	ring on left leg; dark green/ yellow on right leg
2003	18 young ringed			BTO	ring on left leg; red/ yellow on right leg
2004	16 young ringed			BTO	ring on left leg; blue/ yellow on right leg
2005	11 young ringed			BTO	ring on left leg; orange/ yellow on right leg
Please report any sightings to Mick McQuaid  or Mike Collard

Little Marlow Gravel Pit - 2004

ajpCTern500.JPG (13437 bytes)

These pictures of adults show the black in the wing tips really well.

ajp1-Tern450.JPG (12638 bytes)

Picture 1107-Tern450.jpg (13099 bytes)

Above and below - The juvenile bill and upperwing patterns are shown very well.

Picture 1110-Tern-450.jpg (10843 bytes)

Picture 166-TernRing-450.jpg (27052 bytes)
Above photos copyright Adrian Parker

DSCN9004-Tern 28thJune04-400.jpg (22675 bytes)
Photo copyright Mike Collard

2004 was another good year for the Common Terns at Little Marlow GP.  There were 16 terns ringed on the rafts this year, each one given a blue over yellow colour ring on their left leg.  There were also 5 dead young on the rafts following wet cold weather on the 24th June.  The ringing was again carried out by Mick McQuaid and Mike Collard.

Of interest is the news that one of the colour rings birds from 2002 was recently seen at Hayling Island, near Portmouth, Hampshire.  In 2002 the colour scheme used was dark green over yellow.


Little Marlow Gravel Pit - 2002

COMMON_TERN3.JPG (20703 bytes)

2542-CommonTernsCIS.JPG (30689 bytes)

2544-CommonTernsCIS.JPG (34174 bytes)
Photos copyright Jim Rose

Just one of the pairs of Common Terns that bred at Little Marlow in 2002. Pictures taken on 26th May 2002


Little Marlow Gravel Pit - August 1999

commontern1.JPG (37247 bytes)
Video still copyright Dave Ferguson

This species is a common passage migrant and regular breeder at a few lakes with islands or purpose built rafts.  At Little Marlow, Common Terns have bred successfully since 1994 when the first Tern raft was launched there.   This bird decided to breed on a tiny island (more a lump of mud) rather than either of the two rafts provided. 

Return to Buckinghamshire Bird Club Home Page