Black-fronted tern - Thornton River Mouth

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Tim Barnard
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Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2016 7:30 pm
Location: Okere Falls

Black-fronted tern - Thornton River Mouth

Postby Tim Barnard » Sun Jun 07, 2020 5:52 pm

Hi
Five birds today with over 400 White-fronted tern. Probably one of the most reliable sites for Bfts in the NI in winter.
100's of Fluttering shearwater offshore ...
Cheers
Tim
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RussCannings
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Re: Black-fronted tern - Thornton River Mouth

Postby RussCannings » Tue Jun 09, 2020 6:47 am

Very cool Tim. They never seem to be there when I am but then again it's been a while since I've popped in! Luckily there was a beautiful adult BFT at Maketu (near the playground) on Sunday when I dropped in with the family.

Russ
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Tim Barnard
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Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2016 7:30 pm
Location: Okere Falls

Re: Black-fronted tern - Thornton River Mouth

Postby Tim Barnard » Tue Jun 09, 2020 1:03 pm

June, July is probably best Russell. Quite enjoy my annual BFT pilgrimage over there. Great you had one at Maketu. Really are stunning birds.

Tim
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Cardinal15
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Re: Black-fronted tern - Thornton River Mouth

Postby Cardinal15 » Thu Jun 18, 2020 1:18 pm

Hi,
Was just wondering where you saw the colony and at what time of day. I saw one there the other day but it was fishing and far away so didn't get good pictures.
Cheers,
Cardinal15
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Threeps
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Re: Black-fronted tern - Thornton River Mouth

Postby Threeps » Fri Jun 19, 2020 8:50 am

Excuse my ignorance, but where in the North Island is this? The only references I can find to Thornton are in Cambridge (a road) or Thornton Beach (Eastern BoP). I would guess its Thornton beach and its not the Thornton River but the Rangitaiki River?
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Cardinal15
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Re: Black-fronted tern - Thornton River Mouth

Postby Cardinal15 » Fri Jun 19, 2020 3:07 pm

Yes, Threeps, you're correct. It is Thornton Beach at the Rangitaiki river mouth in the Eastern Bay of Plenty. It is a very popular fishing spot.
Cheers,
Cardinal15
Pat Miller
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Re: Black-fronted tern - Thornton River Mouth

Postby Pat Miller » Fri Jul 10, 2020 3:52 pm

After your comment Tim about this being the most reliable spot in the North Island to see BF Terns I decided to go on a mission there. I made 6 visits to the river mouth between 30th June and 6th July and saw them 3 times : 5 in the morning on 30/6 and 7 in the afternoon the same day - sitting on the sand next to the river both times with 3 WFTs (am) and by themselves (pm). 6 in the afternoon on 5/7 flying around in strong winds inside the river mouth and once venturing out over the breakers, but then circling back across the beach into the estuary part of the river. Beautiful little birds - I'd never seen them in the North Island before this.
Pat
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Tim Barnard
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Location: Okere Falls

Re: Black-fronted tern - Thornton River Mouth

Postby Tim Barnard » Sat Jul 11, 2020 10:24 am

Hi Pat,
Great you saw them. Timing is everything I think. I've generally found midday best. They do sometimes sit on the other side of the river mouth so always worth scoping the far shore. There have been cattle egret quite regularly in the fields near Walker Rd but I've not seen any this year ...
All the best,
Tim
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Tim Barnard
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Location: Okere Falls

Re: Black-fronted tern - Thornton River Mouth

Postby Tim Barnard » Fri Jul 31, 2020 5:04 pm

Three black-fronted terns in breeding plumage today near the river mouth. Three cattle egret in the fields south of Walker Rd.
All the best,
Tim

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