Monday, March 08, 2010

Fairy Terns Can Come True...

.....it can happen to you, if you're in Kapiolani Park.....

Cynthia and I went on a six day vacation to Oahu. Sort of to acclimatize ourselves to some tropical weather before we settle in for good in the Philippines.

One of the birds I wanted to see there was the Fairy Tern or as it is now known..the White Tern (Gygis alba). We were quite surprised to see one right on the very first day as we strolled through Kapiolani Park right next to Waikiki Beach. This species has such an ephemereal beauty that I think Fairy Tern would be the more appropriate name. My wife, on the other hand, confessed that it reminder her more of Jack-in-the-Box (the iconic symbol of a fast food joint here in America). Maybe it was the white rounded head and thin pointy bill that gave Cynthia that notion.

We both agreed, however, that it is quite unique among the terns that we usually see at the mainland. It's flight had a certain degree of playfulness and elegance to it. And those eyes that seemed to be covered by long lashes were just so enchanting to behold.



The afternoon before we left, we once again passed through Kapiolani Park and were mystified anew by the pure whiteness of two Fairy Terns contrasted against the dark branches of a tree. It seemed that the pair were in courtship displaying such endearing affection to one another as if bringing to life some romantic fairy tale.

Frank Sinatra was certainly right when he sang that "fairy tales can come true when you're young at heart. "

We felt young at heart that evening as we watched a fairy tale unfold before us.


For other (as enchanting) bird blogs and photographs, please visit:

10 comments:

mick said...

That is certainly a beautiful bird. We have a Fairy Tern out here also - Sterna nereis - but it is quite different from the ones you have pictured. Is the first photo of an adult bird or a juvenile? The photos with the spread wings are fantastic.

Lana Gramlich said...

Wow...what a beautiful bird!

eileeninmd said...

Bob, It is a beautiful white tern. I love the name fairy tern too.

Felicia said...

Adorable little bird; "fairy tern" does seem appropriate! I've never seen a tern of any type perch in a tree like a songbird before; interesting sighting!

Bob Kaufman said...

@Mick, the first photo was indeed a juvenile.

Wren said...

Oh, I'm so glad you got to see the fairy tern! They are so beautiful - I remember the first time I saw one, years ago, how captivated I was.

Larry said...

What great shots of a gorgeous bird Bob. The Fairy Tern suits me fine. The last two captures, in flight and perched are fabulous.

Johnny Nutcase said...

WOW! those are all gorgeous shots of the tern...but the flight shot - superb, i love it! Beautiful, beautiful bird!

Chris Petrak said...

What a gorgeous bird!! Great photos!

gwendolen said...

Beautiful bird, Bob. I really like the one with the spread wings and blue background. Very angelic. :-)