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Bridled Terns courting

Onychoprion anaethetus


This is a medium-sized tern, at 30–32 cm in length and with a 77–81 cm wingspan similar to the Common Tern in size, but more heavily built. The wings and deeply forked tail are long, and it has dark grey upperparts and white underparts. The forehead and eyebrows are white, as is a striking collar on the hindneck. It has black legs and bill.


Coral sea island


A pair of Bridled terns courting on Lady Elliot island.

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lori.tas 8 years ago

Leanne. Adorable it s the perfect word. The same pair stayed around our tent all week. It was clearly their 'spot'. Thanks, Ram. Since they parked themselves literally on our doorstep, we could hardly miss them.

rams4d 8 years ago

Nice spot.

LeanneGardner 8 years ago

What a great spotting! Love the video lori.tas, that male is adorable, his little dance made me laugh :)

lori.tas 8 years ago

Thanks Marta. The whole island (74ha) is protected, as it falls inside the Great Barrier Reef marine park. And accommodation is only allowed on a vary small portion of that. The birds are by far the most numerous land animals, and seem very at home with their human visitors.

The MnMs
The MnMs 8 years ago

Awesome video and nice that it happens in someones' garden :-)

lori.tas 8 years ago

My partner was using the pool noodle for floatation when snorkeling in the lagoon. And it got claimed right away as a 'perching' spot. yes, that's the female on it in the video, although the male liked to park himself on it a night. I love being somewhere that the animals just accept people, and their things, as part of the ecosystem. The only "problem" birds on the island were the Buff-banded rails, , who had learned to raid the cafeteria for food.

Ava T-B
Ava T-B 8 years ago

Yes, he's wonderful! And I like that the female (?) is standing on a pool noodle!

lori.tas 8 years ago

Isn't he hilarious, Ava. They have the cutest tiny little black webbed feet. And the males get all stamp-y with you if you get to close too them. They'd sit on top of the path lights at night, and then get grumpy with you when you used the path. Funny little birds.

Ava T-B
Ava T-B 8 years ago

Sweet video!

Spotted by

Queensland, Australia

Spotted on Sep 26, 2013
Submitted on Oct 26, 2013

Spotted for Mission

Related Spottings

Sooty Tern Bridled Tern Sooty Tern sooty tern

Nearby Spottings

Buff-banded rail Common noddy (nesting) Spotting Green Turtle


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