Selected aspects of common tern reproductive biology
Courtney, Peter Allan.
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Several factors influencing reproductive success were investigated at a Common Tern colony at Port Colborne, Ontario in 1976. In general three egg clutches hatched better than two egg clutches and early started clutches hatched eggs and fledged chicks better than late clutches; the fledging success of two and three egg clutches was similar. Early clutches took longer to hatch and hatched more synchronously than did late clutches. While hatching success differed with nesting substrate used fledging success' did not* No relationship was found between either incubation attentiveness and reproductive success or between incubation attentiveness and clutch size* At no time did food availability appear to be a factor limiting the successful upbringing of two chick broods. While fCf chicks (i.e. chicks hatching from the last laid eggs of three egg clutches) generally survived and grew poorly relative to their brood mates they grew best when they originated from clutches that hatched relatively asynchronously.