Sooty Tern


From April through August, Sooty and Noddy Terns gather in the hundreds of thousands to breed in the Dry Tortugas. Audubon drew this one on May 10, 1832.

"At Bird Key we found a party of Spanish Eggers from Havannah. They had already laid in a cargo of about eight tons of the eggs of this Tern and the Noddy. On asking them how many they supposed they had, they answered that they never counted them, but disposed of them at seventy-five cents per gallon; and that one turn to market sometimes produced upwards of two hundred dollars, while it took only a-week to sail backwards and forwards and collect their cargo."

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