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Welcome to the BirdForum Opus
The interactive birding encyclopaedia

Welcome to the Opus, an interactive, multimedia encyclopaedia that anyone can edit. You can use the Opus to find out about everything to do with birds - from the birds themselves to the places you can find them.

Featured Article: Elegant Tern
Breeding plumagePhoto by Craig Thayer
Breeding plumage
Photo by Craig Thayer


39–43 cm (15¼-17 in); a medium-large tern

  • Pale grey upperparts
  • White underparts
  • Black legs
  • Long, slender orange bill, often with yellow at tip and more so in winter


The Americas: Breeds on the Pacific coasts of southern California, Baja California and mainly around the Gulf of Mexico in Mexico. Post breeding dispersal both north and east, where vagrants recorded to British Columbia, Texas and very rarely as far as Florida.

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