Alice Springs Waste Stabilisation Ponds

The Whiskered Tern (Chlidonias hybrida) can sometimes be sighted in the Alice Springs Sewerage Ponds on their migratory path heading south in summer or north in winter to northern Australia and parts of New Guinea and Indonesia.

Whiskered Tern (Chlidonias hybrida), Alice Springs Sewage Ponds © Dorothy Latimer
Whiskered Tern (Chlidonias hybrida), Alice Springs Sewage Ponds © Dorothy Latimer

They are pale grey above, white below, white head, streaked black at rear with distinctive black band from eye to nape (the adult breeding plumage have a black cap, to eye level where it meets the white cheeks) and pale grey above and mostly grey below.

They are gregarious birds, and can sometimes be sighted in small numbers here in Alice Springs.

Whiskered Tern (Chlidonias hybrida), Alice Springs Sewage Ponds © Dorothy Latimer
Whiskered Tern (Chlidonias hybrida) early morning, Alice Springs Sewage Ponds © Dorothy Latimer

Check out our Birds | Whiskered Tern (Chlidonias hybrida)

  • Scientific classification
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Subphylum: Vertebrata
  • Informal: Gnathostomata
  • Class: Aves
  • Order: Charadriiformes
  • Family: Laridae
  • Subfamily: Sterninae
  • Tribe: Sternini
  • Genus: Chlidonias
  • Species: Chlidonias hybrida
  • Subspecies:
    • Chlidonias (Pelodes) hybrida javanicus (Horsfield, 1821)
    • Chlidonias hybridus javanicus Horsfield

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