Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Aves Suliformes Fregatidae

Scientific Name: Fregata minor
Species Authority: (Gmelin, 1789)
Common Name(s):
English Great Frigatebird, Great Frigatebird
French Frégate du Pacifique
Taxonomic Source(s): del Hoyo, J., Collar, N.J., Christie, D.A., Elliott, A. and Fishpool, L.D.C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Lynx Edicions BirdLife International.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2012
Date Assessed: 2012-05-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S. & Symes, A.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Ekstrom, J., Butchart, S., Calvert, R.
Although this species may have a restricted range, it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is very large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2009 Least Concern (LC)
2008 Least Concern (LC)
2004 Least Concern (LC)
2000 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)
1994 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)
1988 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Major breeding populations of the Greater Frigatebird are found in tropical waters of the Pacific and Indian Ocean, as well as one population in the South Atlantic (Trinidade and Martim Vaz, Brazil). It is predominately sedentary, with immature and non-breeding individuals dispersing throughout the tropical seas with the exception of the east and central Atlantic.

Countries occurrence:
American Samoa (American Samoa); Aruba; Australia; Brazil; British Indian Ocean Territory; Brunei Darussalam; Chile; China; Christmas Island; Cocos (Keeling) Islands; Colombia; Comoros; Costa Rica; Ecuador (Galápagos); Fiji; French Polynesia; Guam; India; Indonesia; Japan; Kenya; Madagascar; Malaysia; Maldives; Marshall Islands; Mayotte; Mexico; Micronesia, Federated States of ; Mozambique; Nauru; New Caledonia; Northern Mariana Islands; Palau; Philippines; Réunion; Seychelles; Solomon Islands; Somalia; South Africa; Sri Lanka; Taiwan, Province of China; Tanzania, United Republic of; Thailand; Timor-Leste; Tonga; United States (Hawaiian Is.); United States Minor Outlying Islands; Vanuatu; Wallis and Futuna
Mauritius; New Zealand; Oman; Panama; Zimbabwe
Present - origin uncertain:
Cambodia; Cook Islands; El Salvador; French Southern Territories; Guatemala; Kiribati; Nicaragua; Niue; Papua New Guinea; Pitcairn; Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha; Samoa; Singapore; Tokelau; Tuvalu; Viet Nam
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO): Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO): No
Estimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2: 24800
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO): Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in extent of occurrence (EOO): No
Continuing decline in number of locations: Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in the number of locations: No
Upper elevation limit (metres): 150
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Current Population Trend: Decreasing
Additional data:
Continuing decline of mature individuals: Unknown
Extreme fluctuations: No Population severely fragmented: No
Continuing decline in subpopulations: Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in subpopulations: No All individuals in one subpopulation: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: The Greater Frigatebird breeds on small, remote tropical and sub-tropical islands, in mangroves or bushes and occaisionally on bare ground (del Hoyo et al. 1992). Fish, squid and chicks of other bird species (e.g. Sooty Terns) have all been identified as prey (Weimerskirch et al. 2004). It is frequently observed attempting to steal food from other bird species (kleptoparasitism) (Vickery and Brooke 1994). However, this behaviour represents a minor source of energy (Vickery and Brooke 1994, Weimerskirch et al. 2004), and they are frequently observed foraging at the coast or inland at most places where they breed (Weimerskirch et al. 2004).

Systems: Terrestrial; Marine
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat: Unknown
Generation Length (years): 15.2
Movement patterns: Not a Migrant
Congregatory: Congregatory (and dispersive)

Citation: BirdLife International. 2012. Fregata minor. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2012: e.T22697733A40276161. . Downloaded on 07 October 2015.
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