white-fronted tern

December/January Road Trip – Part 5

terns-blog-2The white-fronted terns also nest at Muriwai alongside the gannets.  On my previous visits there two years ago, the tern population was much larger however with the gannet colony ever expanding, the terns have moved to other areas along the beach.  A small number remain on the banks that are not totally stripped of vegetation.terns-blog-6

There were chicks in varying sizes and even what appeared to be a discarded egg semi buried in the sand.  I guess the chick sitting next to it is mighty thankful that the egg didn’t hatch as it meant it got all the food and attention from the parent birds.terns-blog-1 I was constantly amazed that the chicks could identify their parents as they flew over even when their beaks were full of fish and they were unable to call to the chicks. Either that or they were just calling out to anyone with a fish being that they are hungry all of the time, which could be the case.terns-blog-7I didn’t spend a lot of time photographing the terns because the wind was so strong, the smaller target was almost impossible to track focus on with the camera being pushed around by the wind. While these images are quite large crops, I am still happy with them as they do tell the story of what I saw well.terns-blog-4 terns-blog-3terns-blog-5

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