Black Tern – records since 2000

Chlidonias nigerCors-wennol DduAnnual passage migrant.

See also analysis of records presented in Black Tern 1994 and Black Tern 2006

2000 – 87 passed Strumble Hd on 14 dates, 27 Aug-23 Oct, max 45 on 24 Sept. Otherwise 2 Newgale Marsh 28 Sept with one remaining to 30 Sept.

2001 – Well above average passage with 182 logged at Strumble Hd, 25 Aug – 28 Oct, max 97 on 8 Oct

2002 – 18 passed Strumble Hd on 9 dates between 10 Aug-4 Oct, max 8 on 25 Sept

2003 – 7 passed Strumble Hd. on 5 dates between 16 Aug- 2 Oct. max 2 on 4 & 16 Sept. The smallest passage logged since 1993.

2004 – Passage noted at Strumble Hd between 8 Aug- 30 Sept. A total of 28 in Aug & 29 in Sept.  Max 13 on 8 Aug. Elsewhere singles from the Fishguard ferry 13 Aug, w of Grassholm 5 Sept & 3 Skomer 11 Sept.

2005 – 3 nr Grassholm 6 Sept, singles Nevern Est & Teifi Est 25thand Fishguard Harb 28th. Passage at Strumble Hd noted between 21 Aug – 26 Oct. Maxa a remarkable 536 on 31 Aug when party after party, on approaching the shore, bunched up & climbed steeply to disappear into the low cloud. Also 117 on 1 Sept (cf Commic Tern). Both dates surpassing the previous max day count of 112 on 27 Aug 1997. Totals for the whole Autumn add up to the best passage on record. Monthly totals were; Aug 543, Sept 133, Oct 1

2006 – Passage at Strumble Hd noted between 11 Aug – 9 Oct. Max 48 on 14 Sept. Monthly totals Aug 26, Sept 209, Oct 26

2007 – The only records were singles off Strumble Head on 12 & 20 Aug, and 10 & 16 Sept (GHR, AR, RS).  This is the smallest passage logged since 1993.

2008 – Spring records are unusual in the county, but this year there were a few, all sinqles. At Marloes Mere 17th Apr., in Jack’s Sound on 5th May, off Freshwater West on 14 May and one for three days at Bosherston 18th — 21 st Apr.

In autumn one at Bosherston18th — 20th Sept. and off Strumble Head one on 31 Aug. In September, 40 on the 1st, 14 on the 2nd, one on the 3rd & 4th, two on 11th and 8 on 14th.

2009 – Very few reported this year, only passage birds off Strumble Head, singles on 23rd & 31st Aug, two on 3rd & 4th Sept with one the following day.

2010 – A single bird was reported from Bosherston on 14th Sept, then another at Pembroke Mill Pond from 4th to 6th Oct. All other records came from Strumble Head where a total of 131 passed between 15th Aug & 6th Oct, max 54 on 5th Sept.

2011 – Strumble Head: A total of 105 birds passed on 15 dates between 31st Aug & 18th Oct max 40 on 18th Sept. The only other records were of a juvenile present at Bosherston from 30th Oct until 1st Nov and one off Skomer on 12th Sept.

2012 – 39 were counted amongst the Commons on Newport beach on 17th Aug. Otherwise the only records were from Strumble Head where a total of 232 birds passed on 19 dates between 13th Aug & 13th Sept, max 177 on 18th Aug. A bird seen on 27th Aug was present in front of the Strumble lookout for over 4 hours feeding with other flocks of birds that were moving through & was never seen to land during that time.

2013 – Again only recorded at Strumble Head, a very low year with only four birds seen. Singles on 28th Aug & the quite late date of 5th Oct and two on 30th Aug.

2014 – Another species only recorded at Strumble Head where 27 birds passed. In August a single on 27th, 16 on 28th, four on 29th and two each on 30th & 31st. The only other record was of two birds passing on 9th Oct.

2015 – Another species only recorded at Strumble Head. A good year for this species with 149 recorded, Maximum count 105 on 23rd Aug.

2016 – At Strumble Head, annual totals fluctuate; 2016 being a low year, with just 20 records, max.10 on 13th Sept. Skokholm had four birds on 13th Sept. Elsewhere: two at St. Brides Bay on 13th Sept and eight in Fishguard Harbour 24th Sept. 13 seen off Skomer on 29th Sept and three the following day.

2017 – Only five birds recorded at Strumble Head again underlining a very poor year for Tern species there and in the county generally.

2018 – A total of nine logged passing Strumble Head, all in August: two on 25th, four on 26th and three on 27th. Single off Broad Haven 2nd Sept.

2019 – Off Strumble Head nine on 31 Aug, single 1 Sept, two 5 Sept. Only other record was of two off Teifi Est 12 Sept.

2020 – All records were of birds passing Strumble Head: two on 22 Aug and one on 26 Aug & 5 Oct.

More about the Black Tern in Pembrokeshire