Friday, May 18, 2012

Least Tern mating ritual and fish dance

I captured this HD video of a pair of Least Terns on Long Beach in Stratford on May 16.

They were in the middle of one of their mating rituals. In this case, the male captures a fish and brings it back to the female on the beach. He holds it while standing behind her, she hunching over flapping her wings quickly but only slightly up and down, veering her head back and forth. He performs the same left to right fast glances. This would go on for a few minutes in this case and typically end in copulation, though I left the area before seeing any more so that they could have their privacy.

At any rate, it is very encouraging to see this state-threatened species getting off to an early and decent start this season in terms of numbers of birds on several of Connecticut's beaches.

Scott Kruitbosch
Conservation Technician

Video © Scott Kruitbosch and not to be reproduced without explicit permission

No comments:

Post a Comment