We studied sex differences in collision mortality in adult Common Terns (Sterna hirundo) at a wind farm in the direct vicinity of a breeding site in Zeebrugge, Belgium in 2005–2007. In total, 64 fatalities were collected and sexed, of which 64% were males. Uneven sex ratio among these birds was most pronounced during the period of incubation and early chick feeding (15 May–15 June), when 78% of the 28 mortalities were male. During prelaying and feeding of young, the sex ratio of mortalities did not differ from equality. We argue that sex-biased collision mortality in Common Terns does not result from morphological differences between the sexes, but rather reflects differences in foraging frequency between males and females during egg-laying and incubation.
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Vol. 110 • No. 1