Sooty Tern Onychoprion fuscatus
(aka Sterna fuscata)
|Michaelmas Key, Queensland,
The Sooty Tern breeds on oceanic islands of sand, coral or rock in tropical and sub-tropical waters around the world. They are rarely found in cold water areas. The islands have to be free of predators.
|After the chicks have fledged all the birds leave the breeding colony and spend the next 3 months or so entirely at sea. They are rarely seen on the surface of the ocean and it is believed that they sleep on the wing. A few months before the next breeding season they roost at night on the island on which they will eventually breed.|
|Photo 1 shows an adult with a juvenile; photo 3 shows a typical nest site of flat, open sand; photo 5 shows a juvenile; and photo 6 shows a first summer bird with its dark chin, throat and upper breast.|
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