Family Albatrosses (Diomedeidae)

Vulnerable

Wandering Albatross (Diomedea exulans)


Taxonomy

French: Albatros hurleur German: Wanderalbatros Spanish: Albatros viajero
Other common names: Snowy Albatross
Taxonomy:

Diomedea exulans

Linnaeus

, 1758,

Cape of Good Hope

.

Until recently was treated as conspecific with D. dabbenena and, indeed, also with D. antipodensis and sometimes D. amsterdamensis (which see). Type specimen lost, but probably not referable to population on Tristan da Cunha, as was traditionally held; as a result, birds of Tristan now labelled as D. dabbenena, while the name exulans is currently applied to populations formerly listed as chionoptera. Monotypic.

Distribution:

Southern Ocean, breeding from South Georgia E to Kerguelen, Heard and MacDonald Is and Macquarie I.

Descriptive notes

107–135 cm; male 8190–11,910 g, female 6720–8700 g; wingspan 254–351 cm. Plumage whitens with age; illustrated bird is an old male, snowy stage. Adult... read more

Voice

Calls include a repetitive croak and a powerful expiratory whine, preceded by an inhalation, plus... read more

Habitat

Marine and highly pelagic; seldom approaches land except for breeding; in Australasian part of... read more

Food and feeding

Mainly cephalopods (Kondakovia longimana, Sepia apama, Histioteuthis, Moroteuthis, Taonius);... read more

Breeding

Biennial (though see below), starting Nov with return to colony (males first), c. 27 days prior to breeding, pre-laying exodus (... read more

Movements

Disperses widely over Southern Ocean after breeding, most birds probably moving E, perhaps in... read more

Status and conservation

VULNERABLE. Considerable decline in past, which still continues slowly at present, though species may be recovering locally, e.g. some evidence of increase on Marion I... read more

Recommended citation

Carboneras, C., Jutglar, F., Kirwan, G.M. & Garcia, E.F.J. (2018). Wandering Albatross (Diomedea exulans). 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 https://www.hbw.com/node/52498 on 22 October 2018).