Growing up in Alaska: A Baby Arctic Tern

A baby Arctic Tern hatches in Alaska. He has much to learn: how to eat, how to swim, how to bathe. But his greatest wish ... is to FLY!

This is the story of an Alaskan Arctic Tern as he grows up in Alaska's Potter Marsh near Anchorage. You follow him as he learns to eat, swim and care for his feathers. After many days of practice, trial and failure, he gains the joy of flying with his parents.

The text, photographs and illustrations explain his experiences. Children see how he keeps on trying when practicing new skills. Perfect for reading to younger children and for older children to read to themselves.

A photographic story of learning, growing and spreading your wings.  

Order from (links to all online stores)

Barnes & Noble

Libraries and Resellers


Mom's Choice Awards: Gold Award Distinction

eLit Book Awards: Gold Award: Children's Books (7 and under)

2019 Purple Dragonfly Book Award: Best Photography 2nd Place

2018 Nautilus Book Awards: Silver Award: Children's Picture Books/NonFiction

2019 Independent Publisher Book Awards: Silver Award: Best Children's Illustrated E-Book

2019 Colorado Independent Publishers Association EVVY Awards: Children’s Picture Books 2nd Place

2019 Colorado Independent Publishers Association EVVY Awards: Animals/Pets/Nature 3rd Place

2019 Feathered Quill Book Awards: Bronze/3rd Place

2018-19 Reader Views: Honorable Mention Early Reader-Ages 6-8

2019 Eric Hoffer Award: Children's Honorable Mention and Eric Hoffer Award Grand Prize Short List

Sample page from Growing up in Alaska

Sample Page.

Baby Arctic Tern cheeping
Adult Arctic Terns on rock
Baby Arctic Tern stretches wings
Arctic Tern brings fish to baby

Resources for educators and libraries

Videos and images of the Arctic Terns from the book

Children's Activities

Reviews on

  • "This is a beautiful book, the photos are wonderful - the kind that must have required the author/photographer to have lots of patience, watching as the baby tern developed. The writing is delightful. So much about the arctic terns is explained so naturally, using dialogue between the mother and father birds and the baby. I am looking forward to being able to read it to my family's grandchildren. They will love it."
  • "Growing up in Alaska" is a wonderful book for children and for adults too. The numerous photos of the baby Arctic tern are gorgeous, and the text is illuminating. The language is simple for children to understand, while adults will also learn a great deal. I highly recommend this book.

About the author & photographer

Constance Taylor is an amateur photographer who enjoys watching Alaska's birds and wildlife. She's a retired commercial salmon and shrimp fisherman. Currently she is a publisher, Fathom Publishing Company, and a web designer. You can view more of her Alaska photographs at Read more about the author here.

About the cover illustrator

Ben O'Brien (aka Ben the Illustrator) is a commercial illustrator based in the UK, taking inspiration from nature, people and travel. You can enjoy his portfolio or order art prints from his print store.

Publisher’s Cataloging-in-Publication data

Names: Taylor, Constance, author. | O’Brien, Ben, illustrator.
Title: Growing up in Alaska: a baby Arctic tern / Constance Taylor; illustrations by Ben the Illustrator; photographs by Constance Taylor.
Description: Anchorage, AK: Fathom Publishing Company, 2018.
Summary: A photographically illustrated story of a baby Arctic Tern growing up in Alaska, learning to eat, swim, preen and eventually fly.
Identifiers: ISBN 978-1-888215-75-5 (Hardcover) |
978-1-888215-76-2 (pbk.) | 978-1-888215-77-9 (ebook) | LCCN 2018945806
Subjects: LCSH Arctic tern--Juvenile literature. | Arctic tern--Migration--Juvenile literature. | Terns--Juvenile literature. | Wetlands--Alaska--Juvenile literature. | CYAC Arctic tern--Migration. | Terns. | Wetlands--Alaska. | BISAC JUVENILE FICTION / Animals / Birds | NATURE / Animals / Birds
Classification: LCC QL696.C46 T39 2018 | DDC 598.3/38--dc23

Fathom on Pinterest        Arctic Tern Videos        Contact Us