Common Tern
Common Tern
Scientific Name 
Sterna hirundo
Arabic Name 
الخرشنة الشائعة
Kuwaiti name 
80.0 cm
35.0 cm
Least Concern
Similar species 


Uncommon passage migrant. This typical “river tern” breeds in the Mesopotamian Delta but has not been confirmed breeding within Kuwaiti territory. Usually seen in small numbers; up to 30 recorded in late May 1986.
Where in Kuwait 
It is found on sheltered coastal waters including wetlands in the Jahra Bay area. During non-breeding season, it is known to roost on unvegetated sandy beaches, shores near outfalls. This species catches its prey by plunge-diving
In the world 
It has an extremely large range with a decreasing population and has a circumpolar distribution and can be found breeding in most of Europe, Asia and North America. It winters further south, being found along the coast and inland of South America, along the coast of Africa excluding the north, along parts of the Arabian Peninsula and the whole coast of India, and throughout much of south-east Asia and Australasia.
Local threats 
Marine oil spills and pollution