New York Natural Heritage Program
Common Tern
Sterna hirundo Linnaeus, 1758

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Blokpoel, H., G. D. Tessier, and R. A. B. Andress. 1997. Successful restoration of the Ice Island Common Tern colony requires ongoing control of Ring-billed Gulls. Colon. Waterbirds 20:98-101.
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Buckley, P.A. and F.G. Buckley. 2000. Patterns of colony-site use and disuse in saltmarsh-nesting Common and Roseate Terns. Journal of Field Ornithology 71(2):356-369.
Bull, J. 1964. Birds of the New York area. Harper and Row, New York.
Bull, John. 1974. Birds of New York State. Doubleday, Garden City, New York. 655 pp.
Burger, J. and F. Lesser. 1978. Selection of colony sites and nest sites by Common Terns Sterna hirundo in Ocean County, New Jersey. Ibis 120:433-449.
Burger, J. and M. Gochfeld. 1988b. Metals in tern eggs in a New Jersey estuary: a decade of change. Environ. Monitor. Assess. 11:37-42.
Burger, J., I. C. T. Nisbet, and M. Gochfeld. 1992. Metal levels in regrown feathers: assessment of contamination in the same individuals on the wintering and breeding grounds. J. Toxicol. Environ. Health 37:363-374.
Burger, J., and M. Gochfeld. 1991. The common tern: its breeding biology and social behavior. Columbia Univ. Press, New York. 413 pp.
Courtney, P. A. and H. Blokpoel. 1983. Distribution and numbers of Common Terns on the lower Great Lakes during 1900-1980: a review. Colon. Waterbirds 6:107-112.
Custer, T. W., J. C. Franson, J. F. Moore, and J. E. Myers. 1986. Reproductive success and heavy metal contamination in Rhode Island Common Terns. Environ. Pollut. A 41:33-52.
DeKay, J.E. 1844. Zoology of New York; or, the New York fauna. Part 2: Birds. D. Appelton, and Wiley and Putnam, New York.
Ehrlich, P. R., D. S. Dobkin, and D. Wheye. 1992. Birds in Jeopardy: the Imperiled and Extinct Birds of the United States and Canada, Including Hawaii and Puerto Rico. Stanford University Press, Stanford, California. 259 pp.
Erwin, R. M. 1980. Breeding habitat used by colonially nesting waterbirds in two mid-Atlantic US regions under different regimes of human disturbance. Biol. Conserv. 18: 39-51.
Giraud, J.P., Jr. 1844. Birds of Long Island. Wiley & Putnam, New York.
Gochfeld, M. 1979. Group adherence in emigration of Common Terns. Bird-Banding 50:365-366.
Harrison, C. 1978. A Field Guide to the Nests, Eggs and Nestlings of North American Birds. Collins, Cleveland, Ohio.
Hays, H, J. DiCostanzo, G. Cormons, P. de Tarso Zuquim Antas, J. L. Xavier do Nascimento, I. de Lima Serrano do Nascimento, and R. E. Bremer. 1997. Recoveries of Common and Roseate Terns in South America. Journal Field Ornithology 68(1):79-90.
Hays, H. 1998. Common Tern (Sterna hirundo). Pages 299-302 in Bull's birds of New York (E. Levine, Ed.). Comstock Publishing Associates, Ithaca, NY.
Hays, H. and R. W. Risebrough 1972. Pollutant concentrations in abnormal young terns from Long Island Sound. Auk 89(1):19-35.
Hays, H., P. Lima, L. Monteiro, J. DiCostanzo, G. Cormons, I. C. T. Nisbet, J. E. Saliva, J. A. Spendelow, J. Burger, J. Pierce, and M. Gochfeld. 1999. A nonbreeding concentration of Roseate and Common Terns in Bahia, Brazil. Journal of Field Ornithology 70: 455-622.
Hoffman, D. J., G. J. Smith, and B. A. Rattner. 1993. Biomarkers of contaminant exposure in Common Terns and Black-crowned Night-Herons in the Great Lakes. Environ. Toxicol. Chem. 12:1095-1103.
Karwowski, K., J. E. Gates, and L. H. Harper. 1995. Common terns nesting on navigational aids and natural islands in the St. Lawrence River, New York. Wilson Bulletin 107:423-436.
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Kress, S. W. 1997. Using animal behavior for conservation: case studies in seabird restoration from the Maine coast, USA. J. Yamashina Inst. Ornithol. 29:1-26.
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McGowan, K.J. and K. Corwin, eds. 2008. The Second Atlas of Breeding Birds in New York State: 2000-2005. Cornell University Press, Ithaca, NY. 688 pp.
Merwin, M.M. 1918. Common Tern nesting at Thousand Islands. Auk 35:74.
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New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. Checklist of the amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals of New York State, including their protective status. Nongame Unit, Wildlife Resources Center, Delmar, NY.
Nisbet, I. C. T. 1977. Courtship-feeding and clutch size in Common Terns. Pages 101-109 in Evolutionary ecology. (Stonehouse, B. and C. Perrins, Eds.) Macmillan, London.
Nisbet, I. C. T. and L. M. Reynolds. 1984. Organochlorine residues in Common Terns and associated estuarine organisms, Massachusetts, USA, 1971-81. Mar. Environ. Res. 11:33-66.
Nisbet, I. C. T., and M. J. Welton. 1984. Seasonal variations in breeding success of common terns: consequencesof predation. Condor 86:53-60.
Nisbet, Ian C. 2002. Common Tern (Sterna hirundo), The Birds of North America Online (A. Poole, Ed.). Ithaca: Cornell Lab of Ornithology; Retrieved from the Birds of North America Online:
Peterson, D.M., T.S. Litwin, D.C. MacLean, and R.A. Lent. 1985. 1985 Long Island colonial waterbird and Piping Plover survey. Unpublished report. Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Seatuck Research Program, Islip, NY.
Safina, C., D. Witting, and K. Smith. 1989. Viability of salt marshes as nesting habitat for Common Terns in New York. Condor 91:571-584.
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Severinghaus, L. L. 1982. Nest site selection by the Common Tern Sterna hirundo on Oneida Lake, New York. Colon. Waterbirds 5:11-18.
Sommers, Laura and Michelle L. Alfieri. 1998. 1997 Long Island Colonial waterbird and piping plover survey. New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Nongame and Habitat Unit. Delmar, NY and Region 1, Stony Brook, NY.
Spendelow, J. A. and S. R. Patton. 1988. National Atlas of Coastal Waterbird Colonies in the Contiguous United States: 1976-1982. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Biological Report 88(5). x + 326 pp.
Stoner, D. 1932. Ornithology of the Oneida Lake region: with reference to the late spring and summer seasons. Roosevelt Wild Life Annals 2:271-764.
Weseloh, D. V., T. W. Custer, and B. M. Braune. 1989. Organochlorine contaminants in eggs of Common Terns from the Canadian Great Lakes, 1981. Environ. Pollut. 59:141-160.
Wiggins, D. A., et al. 1984. Occurrence and timing of second clutches in common terns. Auk 101:281-284.
van Halewyn, R., and R. L. Norton. 1984. The status and conservation of seabirds in the Caribbean. Pages 169-222 in Croxall et al., eds. Status and conservation of the world's seabirds. ICBP Tech. Pub. No. 2


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This guide was authored by: Kelly A. Perkins
Information for this guide was last updated on: 10-Aug-2017