Forster’s Tern

(Sterna forsteri)

               
Conservation Status

IUCN Red List

LC - Least Concern

 

No Image Available

NatureServe

N5B, N5N - Secure Breeding and Nonbreeding

S3B - Vulnerable Breeding

Minnesota

Special Concern

Species in Greatest Conservation Need

Occurrence

Common migrant

Habitat

Breeding: large marshes with open water

Migration: lakes and marshes

Size

14 to 16 in length

31 wingspan

 
Identification

The bill and legs are orange. The underparts are white. The tail is gray with white outer edges.

 
Voice

 

 
Similar
Species

Caspian Tern (Sterna caspia) is a much larger bird. The bill is reddish-orange.

Common Tern (Sterna hirundo) bill and legs are darker red. The underparts are grayish. The tail is white with gray outer edges. The call is higher pitched and longer in duration.

 
Food

Small fish, aquatic invertebrates, and flying insects

 
Nesting

 

 
Migration

Early April to mid-May and August to early October

 
Comments

 

 
Taxonomy

Order:

Charadriiformes (shorebirds and relatives)

 

Family:

Laridae (gulls, terns, and skimmers)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

       
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Camera

 

     
Slideshows
   
  Forster's Tern
Andy Reago & Chrissy McClarren
 
  Forster's Tern  
     
  Forster's Tern
JMC Nature Photos
 
  Forster's Tern  
     
  Forster's Tern (Sterna forsteri)
Joshua Mayer
 
  Forster's Tern (Sterna forsteri)  
     
  Foster's Tern in Flight
marshalljedediah
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on May 16, 2007

Photos of a Foster's Tern in flight. Newport Bay, CA. 5/16/07

 
     

 

slideshow

       
Visitor Videos
   
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Other Videos
 
  Forster's Tern 2 (Panasonic GH2 + 100-300mm)
MackM48
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on May 12, 2011

Panasonic GH2 + 100-300mm
AVCHD 1920x1080 60i 17Mbps
Exposure: F8 1/160 ISO Ex-telecon
2011-05-12

   
       
  Forster's Tern, Sterna forsteri, preening.
Rob Curtis
 
   
 
About

Published on Apr 23, 2014

Forster's Terns, Sterna forsteri preening

   
       
  Forster's and Common Tern Quiz
Andrew Reago
 
   
 
About

Published on Sep 3, 2012

On 9/1/2012, I digiscoped some Forster's Terns visiting Riverlands Migratory Bird Sanctuary in Alton, Missouri. I thought they were all Forster's, until Bill Rudden pointed out that I might want to look again and see if there was a Common Tern amongst the bunch. And guess what? There was. Have fun finding the Common Tern. My wife Chrissy McClarren helped create this quiz. Thanks Bill!

   
       
  Forster's Tern, Hwy 99 NE of Craven, Saskatchewan, Canada June 6 2014
Sask Birder
 
   
 
About

Published on Nov 23, 2014

Forster's Tern, Hwy 99 NE of Craven, Saskatchewan, Canada June 6 2014

   
       
  Juvenile Forster's Tern
Brian Kushner
 
   
 
About

Published on Aug 21, 2014

Juvenile Forster's Tern - Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge - Oceanville NJ

   
       

 

Camcorder

         
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