Family Albatrosses (Diomedeidae)

Least Concern

Black-browed Albatross (Thalassarche melanophris)


French: Albatros à sourcils noirs German: Schwarzbrauenalbatros Spanish: Albatros ojeroso

Diomedea melanophris


, 1828,

Cape of Good Hope, South Africa


Until recently considered conspecific with T. impavida (which see). Genetic studies indicate that form breeding in Falkland Is represents a separate taxon#R, as yet unnamed. Specific name sometimes listed as melanophrys but this is an incorrect subsequent spelling and has been formally suppressed#R. Monotypic.


Southern Ocean, breeding from Cape Horn and Falkland Is E to Antipodes Is.

Descriptive notes

79–93 cm; male 3266–4658 g, female 2840–3806 g; wingspan 205–240 cm. Heavy build; wings often appear broad and blunt; fairly dark underwing, with... read more


Principal calls are Croaks (which signal identification and possession) and Wails (latter often... read more


Marine; to some extent pelagic, wandering over vast areas of sea sometimes 1000s of km from land,... read more

Food and feeding

Mainly crustaceans (Euphausia superba, Themisto gaudichaudii, Munida, Gnathophausia gigas, ... read more


Annual (although only 75–80% of successful breeders and 67–75% of failed breeders attempt to breed in following year and 5... read more


Despite extensive ringing, until recently movements not very well understood. However, Black-browed... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Probably most abundant and widespread albatross, with population previously estimated 550,000–600,000 breeding pairs, or 2,200,... read more

Recommended citation

Carboneras, C., Jutglar, F. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). Black-browed Albatross (Thalassarche melanophris). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 19 June 2019).