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-122646499-3714...@list.cornell.edu [bounce-122646499-3714...@list.cornell.edu] on behalf of Timothy Healy [tp...@cornell.edu] 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 <swalte...@verizon.net<mailto:swalte...@verizon.net>> 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:tp...@cornell.edu] Sent: Monday, June 18, 2018 6:49 PM To: Steve Walter <swalte...@verizon.net<mailto:swalte...@verizon.net>> Cc: NYSBIRDS <nysbird...@list.cornell.edu<mailto:nysbird...@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 <swalte...@verizon.net<mailto:swalte...@verizon.net>> 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/ . 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