Range. - Temperate America, breeding from the middle portions of the United States northward to Alaska; south in winter beyond the United States Border. The identity of these Terns cannot be mistaken They are but ten inches in length; the whole head, neck and under parts are black; the back, wings and tail are slaty and the under tail coverts are white. Their dainty figure with their long slender wings gives them a grace and airiness, if possible, superior to other species of the family. They are very active and besides feeding upon all manner of marine Crustacea, they capture many insects in the air. They nest in large colonies in marshes, both along the coast and in the interior, making a nest of decayed reeds and grasses, or often laying their eggs upon rafts of decayed vegetation which are floating on he water. The nesting season commences in May, they laying three eggs of a brownish or greenish color, very heavily blotched with blackish brown. Size 1.35 x .95. Data. - Winnebago City, Minn., May 31, 1901. Three eggs. Nest made of a mass of weeds and rushes floating on water in a swamp. Collector, R. H. Bullis.
Deep greenish brown.