White-tailed Tropicbirds

Tropicbirds ... Tropic Bird Photo Gallery

White-tailed Tropicbird White-tailed Tropicbird

 

White-tailed TropicbirdThe White-tailed Tropicbird Phaethon lepturus, is a tropicbird, smallest of three closely related seabirds of the tropical oceans and smallest member of the order Phaethontiformes.

 

Distribution / Range

It occurs in the tropical Atlantic, western Pacific and Indian Oceans. It also breeds on some Caribbean islands, and a few pairs have started nesting recently on Little Tobago, joining the Red-billed Tropicbird colony. In addition to the tropical Atlantic, it nests as far north as Bermuda, where it is locally called a "Longtail".

The White-tailed Tropicbird breeds on tropical islands laying a single egg directly onto the ground or a cliff ledge. It disperses widely across the oceans when not breeding, and sometimes wanders far.

 

Diet / Feeding

It feeds on fish and squid, caught by surface plunging, but this species is a poor swimmer.

 

White-tailed TropicbirdsCall / Vocalizations

The call is a high screamed keee-keee-krrrt-krrt-krrt.

 

Description

The adult White-tailed Tropicbird is a slender, mainly white bird, 71-80 cm long including the very long central tail feathers, which double its total length. The wingspan is 89-96 cm, and there is a black band on the inner wing. There is black through the eye and the bill is orange-yellow to orange red. The bill color, pure white back and black wing bar distinguish this species from Red-billed.

Males and females look alike, although males average longer tailed, but juveniles lack the tail streamers, have a green-yellow bill, and a finely barred back.

There are six subspecies

    • P. l. lepturus – Indian Ocean.
     
    • P. l. fulvus (Golden Bosun) – Christmas Island. This form has a golden wash to the white plumage.
     
    • P. l. dorotheae – tropical Pacific.
     
    • P. l. catesbyi – Bermuda and Caribbean.
     
    • P. l. ascensionis – Ascension Island
     
    • P. l. europae - Europe Island, s. Mozambique Channel.
 

References

  • BirdLife International (2004). . 2006 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN 2006. Retrieved on 12 May 2006. Database entry includes justification for why this species is of least concern

  • Harrison, Peter (1996). Seabirds of the World. Princeton: Princeton University Press. ISBN 0-691-01551-1.

  • ffrench, Richard (1991). A Guide to the Birds of Trinidad and Tobago (2nd edition ed.). Comstock Publishing. ISBN 0-8014-9792-2.
 

Copyright: Wikipedia. This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia.org.

White-tailed Tropicbird

White-tailed Tropicbird


 

Please Note: The articles or images on this page are the sole property of the authors or photographers. Please contact them directly with respect to any copyright or licensing questions. Thank you.

The Avianweb strives to maintain accurate and up-to-date information; however, mistakes do happen. If you would like to correct or update any of the information, please send us an e-mail. THANK YOU!

Comments