Stratton Island is a truly special place. This small island hosts not only a significant tern colony, but a diverse heronry as well. The island?s center is dominated by tall shrubs within which the herons nest. The shoreline is a combination of sandy beach and rock outcrop. Small grassy openings also occur on the island as does a small brackish marsh.

Ornithological Summary

Stratton Island is an important breeding site for numerous Endangered and Threatened birds. Chief among these is the occurrence of over 120 Roseate Terns and nearly 1900 pairs of Common Terns. However, Stratton is better known for its nesting wading birds. At one time, as many as seven species of wading birds nested here, including Cattle, Snowy, and Great Egrets; Little Blue and Tricolored Herons; Black-crowned Night-herons and Glossy Ibis. This island also supports nesting Double-crested Cormorants and Common Eiders.

Conservation Issues

Despite conservation ownership, the island?s bird population faces many threats. Each breeding season, seabird interns reside on the island to monitor tern populations and prevent disturbance from boaters and kayakers wishing to land on the island. Predation threats abound as well, especially from resident Black-crowned Night-herons. As with any island, the threat from oil spill or other discharge is ever present.


The island is owned by National Audubon. Public access is not allowed during the seabird breeding season.

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