new icn messageflickr-free-ic3d pan white
View allAll Photos Tagged thalasseusmaxima

Sanibel Island Causeway / Lee County, Florida

The scientific name tells us that the Royal Tern is the largest of the crested terns (genus Thalasseus, T. maxima)). Although only slightly smaller (1") than the Caspian Tern, the Royal is easily distinguished by bill color, bill size and crest. The adult Caspian's bill is much redder, and rather thicker, and Caspian lacks a spiky crest. The similar but smaller Elegant Tern of the west coast has a bill that is thinner, and appears longer, sometimes with a slight downcurve. See comparisons in the Sibley Guide.

 

The bird here may just be entering the pre-alternate molt, and it still has the white forehead and cap of a basic plumage or first year bird. The dark tip on the bill is just a shadow. We saw the Royal Tern is small numbers at almost every Florida shoreline venue we visited. This one from Ft. Myers Beach, near Estero Lagoon.

I caught this Royal Tern, one of many, as he took flight once again after plunging head first into the ocean in search of little fish. They have the ability to hover in air for some time, then dive straight down into the water. They grab the fish and immediately become airborne.

 

View on black, please.

Taxonomists used to place the Black Skimmer in the with Terns, so it seems appropriate to show it with one of our largest terns, the Royal Tern. The Black Skimmer here in alternate plumage, probably a male because of the slit visible between the mandibles. The Royal Tern is an adult in pre-alternate molt. Harsh noon light made for a challenging shot, but backlighting helped. Taken at Fred Howard Park, Tarpon Springs, FL, where the birds use the beach as a day roost, despite the frequent disturbance by here by beach-walkers.

With Royal Tern, Laughing Gulls and Franklin's Gulls - and a Cabot's (Sandwich) Tern.

Santa Barbara, CA January 28

 

The use of ANY of my photos, of any file size, is subject to approval by me. Contact me for permission. Larger file sizes of my images are available upon request.

in 2006 the "Crested Terns" were split from the genus Sterna and put in the genus Thalasseus, which includes 6 species. The Royal Tern is clearly much larger (almost at large at the Caspian Tern), and the Sandwich Terns have a close attachment to Royals, as they depend on larger and more agressive terns to protect them in their crowded breeding colonies. Here we see both species in alternate plumage, with their fully black spiky crests.

 

This shot from North Beach, Fort De Soto Park, Florida.

san blas (chacalilla road), nayarit, mexico

suter wildlife area, corpus christi, texas.

Sanibel Island Causeway / Lee County, Florida

The Royal Tern (Thalasseus maximus, syn. Sterna maxima]) is a seabird in the tern family Sternidae. This bird has two distinctive subspecies. T. m. maximus breeds on the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of the southern USA and Mexico into the Caribbean. The slightly smaller T. m. albididorsalis breeds in coastal west Africa.

 

Common on open salty water along sandy beaches and especially around oceanfront bays and inlets. Nests in large colonies on isolated sand islands. Patrols over water and pluge dives for fish.

 

A very large tern, with a heavy orange-red bill. More slender than the simliar Caspian Tern, with thinner wings and bill, mostly white underwings, and very distinctively, for most of the year, a white forehead.

 

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sterna_maxima

Santa Barbara, CA January 28

 

The use of ANY of my photos, of any file size, is subject to approval by me. Contact me for permission. Larger file sizes of my images are available upon request.

Golondrina de mar... (aunque la McKinnon le dice "charrán máximo" no me gusta el nombre) ta re bonita, a poco no?

Sanibel Island Causeway / Lee County, Florida

san blas (peso island beach), nayarit, mexico

padre island national seashore, corpus christi, texas.

Royal Tern just after sunset at Miami South Beach. Laughing gull in the background.

Royal Tern (Thalasseus maxima), Varadero, Cuba.

Royal Tern (Thalasseus maxima), Varadero, Cuba.

padre island national seashore, corpus christi, texas.

Sanibel Island Causeway, Lee County, Florida

Sanibel Island Causeway / Lee County, Florida