Bridled/Brown-Winged Tern (Sterna anaethetus)
A worldwide family of graceful seabirds. Terns have short legs, long pointed wings, forked tails, and fine pointed bills. They have a buoyant flight and often hover over the water before diving to catch small fish. They congregate in large wheeling flocks wherever the fishing is good and are often found in coastal waters or even on inland lagoons and riverways. Many species are migratory, breeding in the extreme northern and southern latitude, and only coming into the tropics in their respective winter seasons. Seven of the 16 species recorded in the Greater Sundas are resident and breed in colonies on beaches or rockpiles. The nest is typically a simple scrape in the sand or gravel.
Description: Medium-sized (37 cm) dark-backed tern with long, deeply forked tail. Adult: dark brownish grey on upperwings, back, and tail except white leading edge to wing and white outer tail feathers; underparts white. White forehead; narrow supercilium extends beyond eye; white collar. Young birds are browner with mottled brown crown, grey breast, and back barred buff.
Iris - brown; bill - black; feet - black.
Voice: Staccato yapping wep-wep, and harsh grating alarm calls kee-err-krr.
Range: Widespread throughout Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific Oceans, as far as Australia.
Habits: Keeps well out to sea, coming inshore only in bad weather or breeding season. Not very social; single or in small parties. The flight is graceful and buoyant. Feeds by scooping insects or fish off the surface; does not dive. Frequently rests on flotsam or at night on the spars of ships. Breeds in mixed colonies with Black-naped Terns.