Small Tern at Wairoa

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Grahame
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Small Tern at Wairoa

Postby Grahame » Fri Apr 12, 2019 12:21 pm

I thought it best to start a new topic.

I thought it is a Little Tern, but it has been suggested to me that it is a Least Tern
IMG_2626[1].JPG
Small Tern with W-f Tern
IMG_2626[1].JPG (273.65 KiB) Viewed 612 times
Grahame
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Re: Small Tern at Wairoa

Postby Grahame » Fri Apr 12, 2019 3:14 pm

Here is a close up.

Cheers, Grahame
IMG_2653[1].JPG
IMG_2653[1].JPG (304.64 KiB) Viewed 582 times
Paul Gibson
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Re: Small Tern at Wairoa

Postby Paul Gibson » Fri Apr 12, 2019 4:52 pm

To me it looks like a Fairy Tern, a non-breeding adult, from Australia? See illustration below from The Australian Bird Guide.
Fairy Tern.jpg
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rukuhia
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Re: Small Tern at Wairoa

Postby rukuhia » Fri Apr 12, 2019 6:06 pm

Here is a couple more photos.
IMG_2658.JPG
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IMG_2663.JPG
IMG_2663.JPG (187.02 KiB) Viewed 541 times
Bob Rigter
Grahame
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Re: Small Tern at Wairoa

Postby Grahame » Fri Apr 12, 2019 6:34 pm

Here the same photo that was overexposed and been corrected by Paul.

Grahame
Tern Wairoa edit1.jpg
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tim
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Re: Small Tern at Wairoa

Postby tim » Fri Apr 12, 2019 7:16 pm

Are we really sure this just isnt a little tern, I know the legs a a tad shorter than a little but it could be just due to the level when taking the photo.
Looks like it is starting to moulting into breeding plumage
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Adam C
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Re: Small Tern at Wairoa

Postby Adam C » Fri Apr 12, 2019 8:03 pm

Perfect fit on the Aus fairy. But I'm not familiar enough with our own to call it.
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phil hammond
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Re: Small Tern at Wairoa

Postby phil hammond » Fri Apr 12, 2019 8:16 pm

I would need to see the bird in the flesh or super photos to make a call but a Fairy Tern with no leg bands would be extraordinarily rare in NZ which is probably why Paul Gibson raised the suggestion of an Aus. I am not sure that it is heavy enough for a Fairy and don't think the legs are right
Ian Southey
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Re: Small Tern at Wairoa

Postby Ian Southey » Fri Apr 12, 2019 9:53 pm

OK. Before this gets too weird.

It's a Little Tern. The bridle stripe is the last part of the head pattern to develop but if you look carefully you can see that it is developing. I too have wondered about the possibility of Australian Fairy Terns for similar birds in the past and then seen them become Little Terns as the moult progresses. There is also enough black there to see that it is going to have a narrow supercilium going well back over the eye.

Also, if anyone hears it call it will let you know exactly what it is.

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Michael Szabo
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Re: Small Tern at Wairoa

Postby Michael Szabo » Sun Apr 14, 2019 8:34 am

Thanks for that explanation Ian, it's very useful.
Michael
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