[EBB Sightings] Elegant Terns

[EBB Sightings] Elegant Terns

Rusty Scalf
Wed Aug 30 15:45:28 PDT 2006
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    Phila Rogers wrote:
    
    "Looking up Elegant Tern in my first bird book, a 1941 copy of Roger
    Tory Peterson's "A Field Guide to Western Birds," I discover that
    Peterson devotes only a few lines to the tern, listing the bird as a
    rare species found in the fall along the coast south of San Francisco. 
    In another example of "nothing stays the same," Elegant Terns now are
    found in the fall as far north as Washington state."
    
     
    I just checked the San Diego County Breeding Bird Atlas (online
    version)
    
    http://www.yournatureconnection.org/research/birdatlas/focus/terns.html
    
     and it seems Elegant Terns were first detected nesting in San Diego in
    1959. A single pair.  After El Nino and predation related ups and
    downs, 3100 nests were counted in 1999. 
    
    A colony which I think is about that size seems to alternates between
    Bolsa Chica Lagoon in Orange County and various opportunities in Los
    Angeles Harbor (some of these disastrous). I don't know when the Orange
    County colony was established, but it was well after the San Diego
    colony.
    
        Rusty Scalf
    
    
    


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