Family Cormorants (Phalacrocoracidae)


Stewart Shag (Leucocarbo chalconotus)


French: Cormoran bronzé German: Stewartscharbe Spanish: Cormorán de la Stewart
Other common names: Bronze Shag

Graculus chalconotus

G. R. Gray

, 1845,

Otago, South Island, New Zealand


Sometimes placed in Phalacrocorax or Euleucocarbo, but classification here follows results of a comprehensive molecular phylogeny for the entire family#R. In past, often considered a race of L. carunculatus (which see). Monotypic.


SE South I (from coast of N Otago S to Foveaux Strait) and Stewart I, in S New Zealand.

Descriptive notes

65–71 cm; male 1797–3875 g, female 1447–2356 g. Heavy-bodied, relatively short-winged dimorphic shag with dark (or bronze) and pied morphs, and some... read more


Usually silent away from breeding colonies. Calls at nest include a low guttural “borr” call of... read more


Marine. Preferably forages in sheltered coastal waters, including bays and inlets, but sometimes as... read more

Food and feeding

Mainly fish (70% of weight), including Tripterygion, Rhombosolea, Arnoglossus, Peltorhamphus; also... read more


Year-round, varying with colony and between years, depending on local conditions. Forms monospecific colonies of up to several hundred... read more


Sedentary; no observations far from Stewart I or breeding grounds on South I.

Status and conservation

VULNERABLE. Population estimates have varied, although the population may have been as high as 5000–8000 individuals in the early 1990s. Although there are no new data... read more

Recommended citation

Orta, J., Jutglar, F., Garcia, E.F.J., Kirwan, G.M. & Boesman, P. (2020). Stewart Shag (Leucocarbo chalconotus). 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 27 February 2020).