Black Tern – Titchfield Haven, Hampshire

Black Tern is a scarce passage migrant in Hampshire with peak spring passage in early May and a smaller autumn passage starting from July. 

6 Black Terns had been seen at Hill Head on Saturday 21st July and so when I visited nearby Titchfield Haven the following Thursday I was hoping there may be others. 

As I was heading down 6 more were seen at Hill Head and it seemed likely that they would drop into the freshwater scrapes at Titchfield. 

Sure enough while I was in the Meon hide overlooking the south scrape someone shouted out that there was a Black Tern on one of the Islands. Stood next to a Common Tern it was strikingly smaller and over the next few minutes a couple of others were seen and I managed some sketches of a juvenile and an adult moulting bird. 

As well as the Black Terns there were 2 Little Ringed Plover and 3 Mediterranean Gulls including 2 juveniles.

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