• Mating: Monogamous; birds form a pair and work together to rear the young.
• Peak Breeding Activity: April-May
• Incubation: 20-28 days
• Clutch Size: 2-3 eggs <
• Typical Foods: small fish, arthropods, and occasionally frogs
Non-breeding birds are easily told from common terns by their black "ear patches." Breeders are similar to the common tern, but the wing tips are white and the bill is more orange with a black tip.
Habitat and Habits
Forster's terns can be seen in large water bodies; lakes, big rivers, and Lake Erie. Their calls are similar to common terns, but lower pitched and easily separated if the two are together. The rasping jeer call suggests the sound made by common nighthawks in their display dives.
Reproduction and Care of the Young
Terns breed in colonies. Nests are built on marshy shorelines or mats of floating vegetation. Both parents brood and feed the young.