White-winged Black Tern
|[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note|
|The White-winged Tern, or White-winged Black Tern (Chlidonias leucopterus) is a small tern generally found in or near bodies of fresh water across from Southeastern Europe east to Australia.|
Adult birds in summer have short red legs and a short black bill (small and stubby, measuring 22–25 mm from the feathers, decidedly shorter than the head), a black neck (often with a pale gray back) and belly, very dark grey back, with a white rump and light grey (almost white) tail, which often looks 'square' in juveniles. The face is tinged yellowish. The wings, as the name implies, are mainly white. The inner wing is grayish with brown-tipped coverts. In non-breeding plumage, most of the black is replaced by white or pale grey, though a few blackish feathers may be retained, admixed with white underparts. A good deal of black shows in the underwing-coverts. The head is black, with a white forehead. The crown is blackish-brown, flecked with white, and the hindcrown is blackish with a certain amount of white flecking. These white markings are pronounced in the winter adult. There is a dark triangular patch forward of the eye. The collar is fairly broad and white. In juveniles and moulting adults, the rump is pale gray, becoming grey in both phases late in the year. The clear white collar and rump isolate the mantle as a dark brown 'saddle'. The mantle feathers have narrow paler brown tips, as have the tertials and scapulars.
Distribution and habitat
Their breeding habitat is freshwater marshes across from southeast Europe to central Asia. They usually nest either on floating vegetation in a marsh or on the ground very close to water, laying 2-4 eggs in a nest built of small reed stems and other vegetation. In winter, they migrate to Africa, southern Asia and Australia. It is a scarce vagrant in North America, mainly on the Atlantic coast, but a few records on the Pacific coast and inland in the Great Lakes area.
Like the other "marsh" terns (Chlidonias), and unlike the "white" (Sterna) terns, these birds do not dive for fish, but fly slowly over the water to surface-pick items on the surface and catch insects in flight. They mainly eat insects and small fish. In flight, the build appears thick-set. The wing-beats are shallow and leisurely.
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Effective, even funny shot (in the positive meaning of the word). At first sight I wasn't sure if this was the real above-water scene or the background was just the sky, but you played with Photoshop a bit and this is why we see the "reflection". Original idea, anyway, and an extraordinary photo which requires brain usage from the viewer. :-) Simplistic yet unique image, for me absolutely the photo of the week (although it's still Wednesday). Excellent work!
Kind regards from Ireland, László
- [2019-06-05 12:57]
Hi Peter,original post but i can't understand what is the second reverse bird,a reflection,another one in flight or just a photoshop work in PP..no problem,good idea to show the common tern in a different way. Have a nice evening and thanks,Luciano
C'est une très belle prise en vol, je suppose qu'il s'agit du reflet. C'est bien fait.
Nice image and a interesting idea. The details and colors are excellent as usual. It looks like a reflection in the water, but without water....no problem, your explanation to Luciano and Laszlo where quite enough to understand the "missing" water.....
Very nice inflight shot, Peter.
Quite well captured this White-Winged Black Tern. It was bit far, I think. Still good details and colors.
Thanks for sharing,
Regards and have a nice weekend,