email a friend
printable version
Location Anguilla (to UK)
Central coordinates 63o 15.22' West  18o 16.94' North
IBA criteria A4i, A4ii, A4iii, B4i, B4ii
Area 1,333 ha
Altitude 0 - 30m
Year of IBA assessment 2013

Site description A low rocky island 13 kilometres northwest of Anguilla with 3 smaller cays off the west and north coasts. The cliffs and inland areas of scrub are home to Anguilla's largest seabird colonies. The coastline has low cliffs interspersed with 5 sandy beaches. Weathered limestone rocks reach sea level on parts of the west and northeast coast. Two large ponds lie inside beaches at Spring bay and Stoney bay. The centre of the island is covered in impenetrable, low, thorny scrub and thousands of prickly pear cacti. A small herd of c30 feral goats are a remnant of former more extensive grazing by livestock.

Key Biodiversity At least 28 species have been recorded including 9 species of breeding seabird:Red-billed Tropicbird, Masked Booby, Brown Booby, Magnificent Frigate Bird, Laughing Gull, Least Tern, Bridle Tern, Sooty Tern and Brown Noddy. The site holds the only Anguillan breeding populations of Magnificent Frigate Bird and Sooty Tern. Surveys in May 2007 documented 113,000 Sooty Terns breeding on Dog Island. Two small ponds and several beaches attract non-breeding and passage wildfowl and shorebirds including White-cheeked pintail, Blue-winged teal, and American Oyster Catcher. Wilsons Plover may breed. Both Osprey and Peregrine Falcons have been recorded outside the breeding season and Caribbean Elaenia, Bananaquits, and Blackfaced Grassquits are the only land birds present. The site has been little visited and requires further study.

Non-bird biodiversity: Dog Island holds populations of several species of reptile: a ground lizard Ameiva plei,a tree lizard Anolis gingivinus, Little Dwarf gecko Sphaerodactylus parvus, Island Dwarf gecko Sphaerodactylus sputator and a slippery back Mabouya sp.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Red-billed Tropicbird Phaethon aethereus breeding  2012  90 breeding pairs  good  A4ii  Least Concern 
Magnificent Frigatebird Fregata magnificens breeding  2012  418 breeding pairs  good  B4ii  Least Concern 
Masked Booby Sula dactylatra breeding  2012  31 breeding pairs  good  B4ii  Least Concern 
Brown Booby Sula leucogaster breeding  2012  1,231 breeding pairs  good  A4ii  Least Concern 
Laughing Gull Larus atricilla resident  2007  365 breeding pairs  medium  A4i  Least Concern 
Bridled Tern Onychoprion anaethetus breeding  2007  46 breeding pairs  medium  B4i  Least Concern 
Sooty Tern Onychoprion fuscatus breeding  2007  113,000 breeding pairs  medium  A4i  Least Concern 
Brown Noddy Anous stolidus breeding  2007  191 breeding pairs  medium  B4i  Least Concern 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds breeding  2007  min 115,200 breeding pairs  medium  A4iii   

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Dog Island Marine Park 1,000 protected area is adjacent to site 0  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Sea Open sea; Pelagic waters  major
Coastline Sand dunes & beaches; Shallow marine areas, coral reefs & keys  minor
Shrubland Arid lowland scrub  major
Wetlands (inland) Freshwater lakes & pools  minor

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
fisheries/aquaculture major
Notes: Fishing, conch, diving
nature conservation and research major
tourism/recreation minor
rangeland/pastureland major
Notes: goats grazing

Further web sources of information 

Site profile from Important Bird Areas in the Caribbean: key sites for conservation (BirdLife International 2008)

Contribute  Please click here to help BirdLife conserve the world's birds - your data for this IBA and others are vital for helping protect the environment.

Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Dog Island. Downloaded from on 27/10/2016

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife