I was able to find the nest due to excellent directions from Ben Cacace. Ben maintains a great set of pages about NYC-area birding hotspots. Here's the one about Governors Island
Yellow-Crowned Night Heron nest
The usual major attraction has always been the nest colonies of Common Terns on the piers of the east side of the island. Two of the piers are in the part of the island still closed to tourists, but the third is at Yankee Pier, where the ferry from Brooklyn arrives. I think this is the only Common Tern nesting area in the region.
Common Tern nesting area on Yankee Pier
Terns nest right out in the open, building a small cairn of pebbles and shells.
Tern on nest
I'm going to try to get out to the island again in July when the eggs hatch.
There are other breeding birds on Governors Island as well. At Ligget's Terrace, which is where the food trucks are, I stopped to watch this singing Mockingbird.
After he flew off, I noticed that a Herring Gull was repeatedly diving on a man walking by. It was quite a sight. He stopped to talk for a few minutes--the gull screaming and diving all though the conversation--and I directed him to the tern colony. It was only after he left that I spotted the baby gulls on a path nearby.
Even baby gulls are cute. Look, they're like little Kiwis!
There's a field nearby on the west edge of the island, slated for eventual development but currently home to several Herring Gull and Great Black-Backed Gull nests.
Before going back to the ferry, I visited the heron nest again. The bird was quite undisturbed by the many passers-by, or by the large number of crows (American and Fish Crow both). I suspect the crows do not want to deal with that massive sharp bill.
in command of the situation