Phaethon aethereus, Linnaeus, 1758, Ascension Island.
OTHER COMMON NAMES
English: Silver bosunbird; French: Phaйton а brins rouges; German: Rotschwanz-Tropikvogel; Spanish: Rabijunco Colirrojo. PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS Adult body length (including streamers) is 18 in (46 cm), wingspan 44 in (112 cm), and weight 1.6 lb (0.75 kg). The overall body color is white, with black markings on the upper wings, a darker back, a black eyestripe, red tailstreamers, and a bright red bill. Juveniles have a black bill.
Tropical and warm-temperate oceans of the western Pacific Ocean, especially off western Mexico and the Galбpagos Islands, the tropical Atlantic Ocean, and the Red Sea region of the northwestern Indian Ocean.
Tropical and warm-temperate waters, especially in coastal areas.
An excellent flier that feeds by shallow plunge-dives and by catching flying-fish on the wing. The voice is a harsh, clanging rattle.
FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET
Small fish, squid, and larger marine invertebrates, which are caught above, at, or just under the water surface.
Breeds on remote tropical islands. A single egg is laid and incubated by both adults. Chicks have gray down, fledge at 80–90 days.
SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS
Not of much importance to humans, except for the economic benefits of ecotourism related to birdwatching.
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