Sunday, 28 October 2012
Crested Terns at Lennox Head
A cool windy and overcast October afternoon in 2012 at Lennox Head, I watched many Crested Terns Thalasseus bergii sitting around on the beach and on semi-submerged rocks. There was probably about 20-25 or so in total with several smaller, probably juvenile ones in that number (though having discussed this with a colleague, the smaller ones may actually be Little Terns, a different species). The size of the crest apparently indicates that it is breeding time and indeed some were seen 'dancing' and spreading their folded wings, I assume this is to impress their potential mate. What was a little humorous was that the terns were sitting around on rocks almost totally submerged by the tide, as the waves would come in they would often have to fly up and land again. I guess the security of the rock was worth the effort! Other than that the birds seemed happy with not much evidence of feeding. Maybe they'd already had their fill of something, or found it a little hard to find food in the windy and choppy conditions. Having said that I don't even know what their usual food is.