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White Tern
(Gygis alba rothschildi) Native

This tern, also known as the Fairy Tern, is native to the island. While uncommon, it's not too difficult to find nesting terns around Honolulu. Some birds remain year-round fledging young, but most birds arrive in February and leave in September.

An interesting note about their nest building is that they don't build one. These birds actually lay their eggs right on the tree branch. or ledge. For 45 days after hatching the young remain close to home. Since these birds fish in the ocean, the adults bring back food to the young mostly in the form of small fish.

Interesting Facts: The Honolulu population of White Terns has the highest fledgling success rate of any White Tern population. This is especially interesting because the tern’s natural breeding areas do not have any natural predators, but Honolulu has plenty. It is thought that the abundance of nesting sites (read: anything a couple feet off the ground) has facilitated this. These birds have no natural fear of humans and may land on your shoulder if you are lucky.
Where to find on campus: There are two “nests” that I have found- one on the Maile Way Median b/w Saunders and Hamilton area, and one on University Avenue on the Diamond Head side just before Dole. If you go to a high story in many of the buildings you can see them flying around the back of Manoa. They are distinguishable from doves in the air by their tail shape, and agility.

Common Myna
Zebra Dove
Rock Dove
Red Vented Bul bul
Java Sparrow
House Sparrow
Pacific Golden Plover
Red-Crested Cardinal
Spotted Dove
White Tern
Northern Red Cardinal
House Finch
Common Waxbill
Shama Thrush
Japanese White-eye