Family Albatrosses (Diomedeidae)

Near Threatened

Laysan Albatross (Phoebastria immutabilis)


French: Albatros de Laysan German: Laysanalbatros Spanish: Albatros de Laysan

Diomedea immutabilis


, 1893,

Laysan Island


Known to have hybridized with P. nigripes. Monotypic.


N Pacific Ocean, breeding in NW Hawaiian Is, mainly on Laysan I and Midway I; small colony recently established in Bonin Is, off SE Japan; recent expansion also in E, in islands off W Mexico (mainly Guadalupe). Extirpated from Wake and Johnston Atolls (W of Hawaii) and Minami Torishima (Japan)#R.

Descriptive notes

71–81 cm; 2210–2800 g; wingspan 195–215 cm. Adult has cap, hindneck and uppertail-coverts white, rest of upperparts including tail and upperwing dark... read more


Various calls recorded, including a doubled Croak (“eh-eh, eh-eh”), a Sky-groan and a prolonged... read more


Marine and pelagic, rarely approaching land except at colonies. Breeds on oceanic islands with low... read more

Food and feeding

Mostly ommastrephid squid (particularlly Ommastrephes bartrami) in Hawaii, but other types of squid predominate in Mexico,... read more


Annual, with 76% of successful breeders and all surviving failed breeders returning to nest in following season. Season starts Nov, birds... read more


Disperses over much of N Pacific after breeding, mainly between 20º N and 55º N, as far N... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Currently considered Near Threatened; previously treated as Vulnerable. World population previously in order of 320,000–360,000 breeding pairs... read more

Recommended citation

Carboneras, C., Jutglar, F. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). Laysan Albatross (Phoebastria immutabilis). 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 16 October 2019).