FWS Focus


dentification Tips: Length: 13 inches Sexes similar Dives into water for prey Medium-sized tern with short, slender, pointed bill Long, deeply forked tail Smoothly rounded head without crest Mostly pale underwing with dark bar on secondaries Gray mantle Adult alternate: Black legs Black bill Black cap with white forehead Gray underparts White rump and tail Juvenile: Scaly brownish wash to upperparts Black bill with red lower mandible Dark cap with pale forehead Reddish legs Tail with dark tips Similar species: The Aleutian Tern's United States range is restricted to Alaska. There, it might be confused with similarly-sized Arctic and Common Terns. The Aleutian Tern has a distinctive white forehead and a dark bar on the secondaries.

Scientific Name

Onychoprion aleuticus
Common Name
Aleutian Tern
FWS Category

Location in Taxonomic Tree

Identification Numbers



Launch Interactive Map