Growing Up

5e f;ledger

Young fledged Arctic Tern

1a fledger

Begging for food

3c fledger

Feed me mum!

2b fledger

As big as an adult but wanting food

4d fledger

And enjoying its first ever bath!

Sunday 19th July comments: How quick they grow up. It doesn’t seem that long ago when the first Arctic Tern chicks were hatching and here we are now reporting fledged young. Across the islands tern colonies plenty of young are present and even more are now flying.

Once over, the world seemed such a big place for young Arctic Terns hiding away in vegetation waiting for their parents to return with food. However a good number can now fly and some even follow their parents (there is not escape for mother or father now!) It’s great to see and as our daily visitors arrive on the island, they are in the thick of the action with lots of tern young using the open jetty area to sit around. The numbers have yet to be crunched but it appears (on the face of it) as another reasonable year for the terns of the Isle of May which is important for the island and the overall species population.

It’s hard to believe that these young will follow their parents to the Antarctic over the next few months, so once they are strong enough to fly, they’ll be heading south and away for another year. The world of the Arctic Tern is as incredible as it sounds, the world’s longest distant bird migrant will be leaving soon and we wish them all safe journeys.

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