Forster's Tern

I think I’ve confessed here before that I’m just a beginning birder.  I enjoy identifying the birds I see, although sometimes it’s tough for me to figure out ones that I don’t see very often. Gulls and Terns seem especially hard.

Anyway, I photographed this bird last weekend at MINWR and it took me a while to sit down and research what it is.  I was pretty sure it’s a Tern, but didn’t know which one.  The red / orange legs were a big clue, although the lack of a black head cap and the dark bill initially confused me.  It turns out (Terns out?) that Forster’s Terns lose their black cap in the winter and their bills turn from orange to grey / black.  Mystery solved!

Forster's Tern
Forster’s Tern

They’re here in Florida only in the winter months – we saw a group of them along BPWD.  They were flying above the water and then plunging in to feed on fish.

In looking back through the rest of my photos from last weekend, the trip was quite productive.  I’ve a number of images that I’m pleased with.  Here’s a couple more:

VAB sunrise. Merritt Island, Florida
VAB sunrise. Merritt Island, Florida.  A four image panorama at 150mm: not my normal landscape focal length

Roseate Spoonbill landing
Roseate Spoonbill landing

You can see larger versions of these photos on Flickr by clicking on them. And I have more photos from MINWR in this set and BPWD in this set.

Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog. Now – go make some photos!

©2012, Ed Rosack. All rights reserved.

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