Date: 6/19/18 4:36 am
From: peter paul <pepaul...>
Subject: Re: [nysbirds-l] Nickerson Beach Arctic Tern and others
To add another layer to the aging confusion, while also tying into the ROST
banding conversation - here are two banded Roseate Terns I have recently
encountered at Nickerson. I have now received reports from both of them.
They were both banded as chicks, one on Great Gull Island, one in
Connecticut, and both in 2016. I think anyone reading this conversation
who encountered them in the field would call them adults by plumage, but by
the terms defined, they are both second summers.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/129132563@N05/27955753537/in/
dateposted-public/
https://www.flickr.com/photos/129132563@N05/28846030558/in/
dateposted-public/

On Tue, Jun 19, 2018 at 5:58 AM, Joseph DiCostanzo <jdicost...>
wrote:

> Shai does an excellent job summarizing the complications of the terms. And
> he makes a very important point about using the term “type” since there is
> so much individual variation you cannot always reliably join plumage to
> chronological age. I would disagree with one point however. On Great Gull
> Island we trap numbers of Common Terns that are 20 years old or older. (I
> frequently tell students the bird they are handling might be older than
> they are.) Some seasons we may handle a hundred birds in this age bracket.
> It is highly unusual for them to be visually different from from other
> adults, so I would disagree with Shai’s statement that many Common Terns in
> this age bracket look like TY birds. I should note that we are trapping
> birds on nests with hatched chicks so they are generally in healthy
> breeding condition. It is certainly possible that birds in subprime
> condition may not be in full adult plumage.
>
> Joe DiCostanzo
>
> Sent from my iPad
>
> > On Jun 18, 2018, at 8:01 PM, Shaibal Mitra <Shaibal.Mitra...>
> wrote:
> >
> > Tim,
> >
> > There's an error here.
> >
> > Regardless of what's true of any given bird, note the following
> equivalenciesduring June-July in NYS:
> >
> > Juvenile = HY = hatching-year
> > First-summer = SY = Second calendar year
> > Second-summer = TY = Third calendar year (but caveat: many this age look
> like adults, and some adults look like this, hence "type")
> > Adult = ATY = After Third calendar year.
> >
> > With terns:
> >
> > 1. the first-summer plumage (=SY =second calendar year) is usually
> highly stereotyped; this is the "portlandica" plumage; one year-old birds
> that differ obviously and consistently from breeding adults.
> >
> > 2. the second-summer type plumage (associated with but not identical to
> TY = third calendar year) is highly variable. Part of this arises because
> it comprises some actual TY birds (two years old; but note, many TY birds
> attain definitive adult appearance), and also a percentage of older, fully
> adult birds that are not in prime condition (very old Common Terns >20
> years old often look like this).
> >
> > Below are links to a series of second-summer type Arctic Tern
> individuals, spanning the gamut from very delayed (almost
> portlandica-looking) to nearly adult looking. The Arctic Terns that show up
> on LI are non-breeders, and they range from classic first-summers through
> all manner of second-summer types to almost adult-looking birds. But among
> the latter, they almost always show some defect from full breeding adult
> condition, and these occur all through June and early July. Thus I tend to
> suspect them as mainly seond-summer = TY = Third year = two year-olds.
> >
> > https://flic.kr/p/VVHtaZ
> > https://flic.kr/p/VhQ65U
> > https://flic.kr/p/VT2po6
> > https://flic.kr/p/VCjr6C
> > https://flic.kr/p/VPwvqd
> > https://flic.kr/p/VT2pRk
> > https://flic.kr/p/VCjq6G
> > https://flic.kr/p/VT2rrp
> > https://flic.kr/p/VT2otk
> > https://flic.kr/p/VhQ6fo
> >
> > Best,
> > Shai
> >
> >
> > ________________________________________
> > From: <bounce-122646499-3714944...> [
> <bounce-122646499-3714944...>] on behalf of Timothy Healy [
> <tph56...>]
> > Sent: Monday, June 18, 2018 7:28 PM
> > To: Steve Walter
> > Cc: NYSBIRDS
> > Subject: Re: [nysbirds-l] Nickerson Beach Arctic Tern and others
> >
> > This is where many banders and field biologists often use the
> abbreviations SY and ASY, for second year and after second year. The second
> year, a.k.a. second summer a.k.a. year old, plumages for many species are
> pretty definitive, and quite distinct from adults. In the case of COTE and
> ARTE, birds stay in a plumage that resembles their initial juvenile
> coloration for their second calendar year. The black-billed,
> white-foreheaded birds that are so abundant at the beach this season are
> coming up on a year old. This “imperfect” adult Arctic, with only some
> smudges, flecks, and short streamers to separate it from a classic mature
> bird, is probably at least two years old. I certainly don’t think it was
> born during the last season, which is what I understand makes a second
> summer bird. It may be in its third summer, or maybe it’s older and just a
> little funky. I reported it on eBird as ASY, because it is definitely far
> more progressed than the typical yearling birds loafing around the inlets.
> >
> > Cheers!
> > -Tim H
> >
> > On Jun 18, 2018, at 7:15 PM, Steve Walter <swalter15...><mailto:
> <swalter15...>> wrote:
> >
> > Tim,
> >
> > In normal conversation, I typically use the phrase “two year old” for
> birds that I suspect were born two summers ago. But as the conversation of
> recent days has alluded, there can be adults that for whatever reason, are
> not complete. And adult traits may not develop in sync in younger birds.
> Looking back at the weekend’s posts, I saw that Pat Lindsay made a point
> about her “second summer type” having a black bill. Today’s had a red bill.
> So a two year old? Probably. But definitely? Maybe, maybe not. It looks
> like it – so “second summer type” works for the public record.
> >
> > Steve
> >
> >
> > From: Timothy Healy [mailto:<tph56...>]
> > Sent: Monday, June 18, 2018 6:49 PM
> > To: Steve Walter <swalter15...><mailto:<swalter15...>>
> > Cc: NYSBIRDS <NYSBIRDS-L...><mailto:NYSBIRDS-L@list.
> cornell.edu>>
> > Subject: Re: [nysbirds-l] Nickerson Beach Arctic Tern and others
> >
> > Steve and other sternid enthusiasts,
> >
> > Isn’t second summer the term used for the immature aspect birds with
> white foreheads and black bills? A freshly fledged juvenile would be living
> through its first summer, so second summer individuals are yearlings,
> correct? If my understanding of the nomenclature is accurate, the bird I
> found yesterday, which matches Steve’s description and the photos of
> Tripper’s bird from Friday, would be in its third summer or older. At a
> glance it looks like a classic alternate plumage adult ARTE, but the faint
> darker smudging on the carpal bar and the tail streamers that don’t extend
> beyond the folded wingtips indicate that it is not fully mature. I saw a
> similarly marked individual at Nickerson last year, and in 2015 I got a
> photo of an adult-like ARTE with a surprisingly dark bill. The variation in
> age classes and species of terns is so fascinating. I’ve learned a lot from
> these discussions about Arctics, Roseates, and the mysterious dark Commons.
> Mornings and afternoons at the colonies and inlets are one of my favorite
> parts of early summer here on Long Island.
> >
> > Cheers!
> > -Tim H
> >
> > On Jun 18, 2018, at 6:05 PM, Steve Walter <swalter15...><mailto:
> <swalter15...>> wrote:
> > Another day, another Arctic Tern at Nickerson Beach. Actually, my first
> for the year, and this one had to be waited on. It might have been too
> foggy in the morning for it to find land (joke). Interesting bird this one.
> My tern guru advises me to call it a “second summer type”. Basically adult
> looking with a red bill, but with a carpal bar and speckling on the
> forehead (not well visible in the picture I posted). In a similar vein,
> there was a Roseate Tern of less than full adult appearance. This bird, and
> also a full adult, had readable blue legs bands. Maybe others have seen
> this, but this is the first time I’ve seen terns with something more
> readable in the field than the metal bands. I’ll reports these (bands B97
> and Y11) and find out more in due time. But perhaps someone on this list
> might know something (Joe D?). Also, a Gull-billed Tern flying over the
> east tern colony around mid-day. Pictures of the Arctic and Roseates have
> been added to the bottom of the Recent Work page at my web site
> http://stevewalternature.com/ .
> >
> > Steve Walter
> > Bayside, NY
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