The California least tern has suffered dramatic declines due to human encroachment and destruction of its nesting habitat. Formerly California least terns regularly nested on sandy beaches and mudflats near the ocean. However, human disturbance related to dredging and development projects have drastically reduced tern nesting habitat. The construction of the Pacific Coast Highway in the early 20th century had a significant impact on California least terns, as well as other shorebirds, by directly destroying nesting beaches as well as making these areas more accessible to human encroachment. Today, the construction of housing developments continues to reduce suitable breeding grounds, and many remaining tern populations choose to nest on mudflats away from the ocean and man-made landfill instead. These more terrestrial sites have made the nesting terns and their chicks increasingly vulnerable to predation by the red fox as well as dogs, cats and raccoons. In addition, the ternÃ¢â¬â¢s fishing grounds have also been severely impacted by dredging, development and pollution. For more information please visit http://www.pacificbio.org/ESIN/Birds/CaliforniaLeastTern/CALeastTern_pg.htmHide.