Inventory of Arctic and Common Terns

Mingan Archipelago National Park Reserve

Study Results

Inventory of Arctic and Common Terns

ROBERGE, B. 2000. (En prép.) Inventaire des populations de Sternes pierregarins et arctiques de la réserve de parc national de l'Archipel-de-Mingan - 1999 . Parcs Canada, Service de la conservation des ressources naturelles, Unité de gestion de Mingan. 22p.

ABSTRACT(Preliminary version)
Common tern nesting in the seashore vegetation
Common Tern
© Parks Canada / É. Le Bel / L 30 09 29

Within the framework of its sea bird monitoring program, Parks Canada has carried out, in 1999, a survey of the Common ( Sterna hirundo ) and Arctic ( Sterna paradisaea ) Terns populations of the Mingan Archipelago National Park Reserve ( MANPR ). The 1999 tern population of the MANPRC was estimated at 4248 pairs, probably making it one of the most important populations in Quebec. A total of forty-nine (49) tern colonies were present within the Park. Sixteen (16) colonies were located in the western part of the Park (Mingan Archipelago) and made up 77% of the population, thirty-three (33) colonies were found in the eastern section of the Park (Watshishu Archipelago) and represented 23% of the population. The number of terns in Minganie has increased since its recorded decrease between 1992 and 1995. This population growth may be linked to many factors such as the immigration of adjacent colonies of the Gulf of St. Lawrence. A shift in the movement of tern colonies within the Mingan Islands has been observed over the past years. Predation and competition for nesting grounds with the sea gulls, the availability of food resources, and anthropogenic perturbations could have an influence on inter-colony movement of terns and on their reproduction in Minganie. The average tern clutch size in the Mingan Archipelago was 2,20 eggs/nest, although a slight variation was observed between the various colonies. Reproductive success was not estimated. Further research programs are needed in order to better understand tern ecology, especially as far as existing relationships between reproductive and foraging strategies are concerned.

A study report is forthcoming.

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