We've just heard that our first recovery of a British and Irish ringed Roseate Tern in Belgium was breeding there. SR14895 was ringed as a nestling close to Dublin, Ireland in 2004 and was found breeding near Zeebrugge, Belgium in 2008.
When we realised that this was a first for Belgium, we asked our Belgian colleagues for confirmation. It turns out that our bird was breeding with a Common Tern, and they successfully produced hybrid chicks which were also ringed. The only other Roseate Tern in the colony also attempted to breed with a Common Tern, but was unsuccessful. Unfortunately in 2009 the colony of over 1000 pairs of terns was decimated by foxes. So far no pure pairs of Roseate Terns have bred in Belgium.
Posted by Dorian Moss