Add to favorites
Arctic Tern

Atlantic Canary
Aplomado Falcon

Previous bird

Aplomado Falcon

  • Falco femoralis
  • Birds of Prey

About the Arctic Tern

The Arctic Tern is a sea bird that breeds in colonies in the Arctic and sub-Arctic regions of Europe, Asia and North America (as far south as Brittany in France and Massachussetts in the United States). It is a migratory bird, spending summers in its northern breeding grounds, and the other half of the year summers in Antarctica. This is the longest migration route by any known animal!

Details & Stats

Hatched Added to Birdorable on: 12 January 2009
Scientific Name Sterna paradisaea
  • Charadriiformes
  • Sternidae
  • Sterna
  • S. paradisaea
Birdorable Family Terns & Gulls
Conservation Status Least Concern
  • Least Concern (LC)
  • Near Threatened (NT)
  • Vulnerable (VU)
  • Endangered (EN)
  • Critically Endangered (CR)
  • Extinct in the Wild (EW)
  • Extinct (EX)
Source: IUCN Red List
(as of 15 September 2017)
Units: Imperial Metric
13 to 15 inches
26 to 30 inches
Range West Europe East Europe North Europe South Europe West Asia South Asia North Africa West Africa Central Africa East Africa South Africa North America Central America Caribbean South America United States (West) United States (East) Arctic Australia and New Zealand Oceania

International Names

  • Trinta-réis-ártico (Brazilian)
  • 北极燕鸥 (Chinese)
  • Rybák Dlouhoocasý (Czech)
  • Havterne (Danish)
  • Noordse Stern (Dutch)
  • Lapintiira (Finnish)
  • Sterne Arctique (French)
  • Küstenseeschwalbe (German)
  • Sterna Codalunga (Italian)
  • キョクアジサシ (Kyokuajisashi) (Japanese)
  • Isterne (Norwegian)
  • Rybitwa Popielata (Polish)
  • Полярная к (Russian)
  • Charrán Artico (Spanish)
  • Silvertärna (Swedish)

Related articles

T-Shirt Tuesday: Know Your Terns

T-Shirt Tuesday: Know Your Terns

This week's highlighted t-shirt is our Know Your Terns! design featuring nine different Birdorable terns: Caspian Tern; Royal Tern; Sandwich Tern; Common Tern; Arctic Tern; Least Tern; Gull-billed Tern; Black Tern; and Sooty ... more
Baby Birdorable: Arctic Tern

Baby Birdorable: Arctic Tern

If you think our Birdorable birds are cute as adults, what about when they are babies? Below are some baby photos (shared via Flickr) of the Arctic Tern. New Life by warner2006 ... more