Common tern

This bird holds the record of the longest distance flown by any bird in recorded history

Badjoby

The common tern is a graceful seabird that may be found over most of its extensive range. It’s also known as a ‘sea-swallow’ because of its forked tail and quick flying. The common tern is frequently observed hovering above water before diving for a meal.

When these birds are disturbed by intruders, they are frequently welcomed by raucous swoops from the angered terns, who nest in noisy, large colonies that blend elegance with pugnacity.

The common tern is a migratory bird that migrates south between late August and October, returning in March/April to its nesting grounds. The flying is slower and more buoyant than gulls, with quick wing beats.

Distribution

Country
Population est.
Status
Year
Comments
Afghanistan
2018
Breeding
Albania
2018
Breeding
Algeria
2018
Angola
2018
Anguilla
2018
Antigua & Barbuda
2018
Argentina
2018
Armenia
2018
Breeding
Aruba
2018
Australia
2018
Austria
2018
Breeding
Azerbaijan
2018
Bahamas
2018
Bahrain
2018
Passage
Bangladesh
2018
Barbados
2018
Belarus
2018
Breeding
Belgium
2018
Belize
2018
Non-Breeding
Benin
2018
Bermuda
2018
Breeding
Bhutan
2018
Bolivia
2018
Bonaire Sint Eustatius And Saba
2018
Non-Breeding
Bosnia And Herz.
2018
Breeding
Brazil
2018
British Virgin Is.
2018
Non-Breeding
Brunei
2018
Bulgaria
2018
Breeding
Cambodia
2018
Cameroon
2018
Canada
2018
Cape Verde
2018
Cayman Islands
2018
Chile
2018
China
2018
Cocos Is. (Keeling)
2018
Vagrant
Colombia
2018
Comoros
2018
Vagrant
Congo-Brazzaville
2018
Cook Islands
2018
Vagrant
Costa Rica
2018
Non-Breeding
Croatia
2018
Breeding
Cuba
2018
Curaçao
2018
Non-Breeding
Cyprus
2018
Czechia
2018
Breeding
Côte D’ivoire
2018
DR Congo (Kinshasa)
2018
Denmark
2018
Djibouti
2018
Dominica
2018
Dominican Republic
2018
East Timor
2018
Ecuador
2018
Egypt
2018
El Salvador
2018
Equatorial Guinea
2018
Eritrea
2018
Estonia
2018
Breeding
Falkland Islands
2018
Malvinas
Faroe Islands
2018
Breeding
Fiji
2018
Passage
Finland
2018
France
2018
French Guiana
2018
Gabon
2018
Gambia
2018
Georgia
2018
Breeding
Germany
2018
Ghana
2018
Gibraltar
2018
Greece
2018
Grenada
2018
Guadeloupe
2018
Non-Breeding
Guam
2018
Non-Breeding
Guatemala
2018
Guinea-Bissau
2018
Guinea
2018
Guyana
2018
Haiti
2018
Honduras
2018
Hong Kong
2018
Hungary
2018
Breeding
Iceland
2018
Vagrant
India
2018
Indonesia
2018
Iran
2018
Iraq
2018
Ireland
2018
Islands
2018
Vagrant
Israel
2018
Italy
2018
Jamaica
2018
Seasonality Uncertain
Japan
2018
Jordan
2018
Passage
Kazakhstan
2018
Breeding
Kenya
2018
Korea
2018
Kuwait
2018
Passage
Kyrgyzstan
2018
Breeding
Latvia
2018
Breeding
Lebanon
2018
Passage
Liberia
2018
Libya
2018
Liechtenstein
2018
Vagrant
Lithuania
2018
Breeding
Luxembourg
2018
Madagascar
2018
Malawi
2018
Vagrant
Malaysia
2018
Non-Breeding
Maldives
2018
Vagrant
Mali
2018
Malta
2018
Marshall Islands
2018
Non-Breeding
Martinique
2018
Mauritania
2018
Breeding
Mauritius
2018
Mexico
2018
Micronesia
2018
Non-Breeding
Moldova
2018
Mongolia
2018
Breeding
Montenegro
2018
Montserrat
2018
Morocco
2018
Mozambique
2018
Myanmar
2018
Namibia
2018
Nepal
2018
Netherlands
2018
Breeding
New Caledonia
2018
New Zealand
2018
Vagrant
Nicaragua
2018
Nigeria
2018
Nort. Mariana Is.
2018
Non-Breeding
North Korea
2018
North Macedonia
2018
Norway
2018
Breeding
Oman
2018
Pakistan
2018
Palau
2018
Non-Breeding
Panama
2018
Papua New Guinea
2018
Paraguay
2018
Passage
Peru
2018
Philippines
2018
Poland
2018
Portugal
2018
Puerto Rico
2018
Qatar
2018
Passage
Romania
2018
Russia
2018
Breeding
Réunion
2018
Saint Barthélemy
2018
Seasonality Uncertain
Saint Lucia
2018
Saint Martin
2018
Non-Breeding: French Part
Saint Pierre
2018
Saint Vincent
2018
Saudi Arabia
2018
Passage
Senegal
2018
Breeding
Serbia
2018
Seychelles
2018
Sierra Leone
2018
Singapore
2018
Sint Maarten
2018
Non-Breeding: Dutch Part
Slovakia
2018
Slovenia
2018
Breeding
Solomon Islands
2018
Somalia
2018
South Africa
2018
South Georgia
2018
Spain
2018
Sri Lanka
2018
St. Kitts & Nevis
2018
Sudan
2018
Passage
Suriname
2018
Sweden
2018
Switzerland
2018
Breeding
Syria
2018
Taiwan
2018
Tajikistan
2018
Breeding
Tanzania
2018
Thailand
2018
Togo
2018
Trinidad & Tobago
2018
Tunisia
2018
Turkey
2018
Breeding
Turkmenistan
2018
Breeding
Turks & Caicos
2018
Breeding
UAE
2018
US Virgin Islands
2018
Non-Breeding
Ukraine
2018
United Kingdom
2018
Breeding
United States
2018
Breeding
Uruguay
2018
Non-Breeding
Uzbekistan
2018
Breeding
Vanuatu
2018
Venezuela
2018
Vietnam
2018
Yemen
2018
Passage
Zambia
2018
Vagrant

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Get to know me

Terrestrial / Aquatic

Altricial / Precocial

Polygamous / Monogamous

Dimorphic / Monomorphic (size)

Active: Diurnal / Nocturnal

Social behavior: Solitary / Pack / Herd

Diet: Carnivore / Herbivore / Omnivore / Piscivorous / Insectivore

Migratory: Yes / No

Domesticated: Yes / No

Dangerous: Yes / No