Copyright 2000-2014 by Thomas Zinneman.  All rights reserved.

Least Tern Sterna antillarum

Least Terns breed from central California to the Baja Peninsula, in portions of the Great Plains and Mississippi River Valley, and the Atlantic and Gulf coasts from Maine to Texas and in coastal areas throughout the Caribbean.  They winter along the northern coast of South America.

In Florida, Least Terns are a common spring through fall resident (Mar-Oct).  They nest primarily along the coast, where beaches provide nest sites.  Small colonies occur inland on flat, gravel-covered rooftops of warehouses, shopping centers, and other large buildings near canals, ponds, or lakes.