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Red-tailed Tropicbird Phaethon rubricauda

IUCN Red List history

Year Category
2013 Least Concern
2012 Least Concern
2009 Least Concern
2008 Least Concern
2004 Least Concern
2000 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1994 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1988 Lower Risk/Least Concern

Species attributes

Migratory status full migrant Forest dependency Does not normally occur in forest
Land mass type   Average mass 675.28 g

Distribution

  Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 105,000,000
Extent of Occurrence non-breeding (km2) 105,000,000
Number of locations -
Fragmentation -

Population & trend

  Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals poor Estimated 0
Population trend Stable -
Number of subpopulations - - -
Largest subpopulation - - -
Generation length (yrs) 13 - - -
Population justification: The global population is estimated to number > c.32,000 individuals (del Hoyo et al), while the population of Japan has been estimated at < c.100 breeding pairs and < c.50 individuals on migration (Brazil 2009).
Trend justification: The population is suspected to be stable in the absence of evidence for any declines or substantial threats.

Country/Territory distribution

Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Breeding Non-breeding Passage
American Samoa Unknown Extant      
Australia Native Extant      
Bangladesh Native Extant      
Brazil Vagrant Extant   Yes  
British Indian Ocean Territory Native Extant      
Canada Native Extant      
Chile Native Extant      
China (mainland) Native Extant      
Christmas Island (to Australia) Native Extant Yes    
Cocos (Keeling) Islands (to Australia) Native Extant Yes    
Comoros Native Extant      
Cook Islands Unknown Extant      
Fiji Vagrant Extant   Yes  
French Polynesia Native Extant Yes    
French Southern Territories Unknown Extant      
Guam (to USA) Native Extant   Yes  
India Native Extant      
Indonesia Native Extant      
Japan Native Extant      
Kenya Vagrant Extant      
Kiribati Unknown Extant      
Madagascar Native Extant      
Malaysia Unknown Extant      
Maldives Unknown Extant      
Marshall Islands Native Extant Yes    
Mauritius Native Extant Yes    
Mayotte (to France) Native Extant      
Mexico Native Extant      
Micronesia, Federated States of Native Extant      
Mozambique Native Extant      
Nauru Unknown Extant      
New Caledonia (to France) Native Extant Yes    
New Zealand Native Extant Yes    
Niue (to New Zealand) Unknown Extant      
Norfolk Island (to Australia) Native Extant      
Northern Mariana Islands (to USA) Native Extant Yes    
Palau Native Extant Yes    
Papua New Guinea Unknown Extant      
Peru Vagrant Extant      
Philippines Native Extant      
Pitcairn Islands (to UK) Native Extant Yes    
Réunion (to France) Native Extant Yes    
Samoa Unknown Extant      
Seychelles Native Extant Yes    
Solomon Islands Native Extant      
Somalia Unknown Extant      
South Africa Native Extant      
Taiwan (China) Native Extant      
Tanzania Unknown Extant      
Thailand Vagrant Extant      
Timor-Leste Unknown Extant      
Tokelau (to New Zealand) Unknown Extant      
Tonga Native Extant      
Tuvalu Unknown Extant      
United States Minor Outlying Islands (to USA) Native Extant Yes    
USA Native Extant   Yes  
Vanuatu Unknown Extant      
Wallis and Futuna Islands (to France) Native Extant Yes    

Important Bird Areas where this species has triggered the IBA criteria

Country/Territory IBA Name IBA link
Australia Coringa-Herald Reefs site factsheet
Australia Lord Howe Island Permanent Park Preserve (Lord Howe Island IBA) site factsheet
Chile Isla Rapa Nui site factsheet
Chile Isla Sala y Gómez site factsheet
Christmas Island (to Australia) Christmas Island site factsheet
French Southern Territories Europa site factsheet
High Seas Indian Ocean, Western 50 - Marine site factsheet
Indonesia Pulau Gunung Api site factsheet
Indonesia Pulau Manuk site factsheet
Japan Iwo islands site factsheet
Mauritius Round Island site factsheet
Norfolk Island (to Australia) Norfolk Island site factsheet
Pitcairn Islands (to UK) Ducie Island site factsheet
Pitcairn Islands (to UK) Oeno Island site factsheet
Seychelles Aldabra atoll site factsheet
Seychelles Cosmoledo atoll site factsheet
USA Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge site factsheet
USA Lehua Islet site factsheet
USA Lehua Islet site factsheet
USA Northwestern Hawaiian Islands site factsheet

Habitats & altitude

Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Marine Coastal/Supratidal Sea Cliffs and Rocky Offshore Islands major breeding
Marine Neritic Macroalgal/Kelp major breeding
Marine Neritic Macroalgal/Kelp major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Pelagic major breeding
Marine Neritic Pelagic major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Seagrass (Submerged) major breeding
Marine Neritic Seagrass (Submerged) major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Loose Rock/pebble/gravel major breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Loose Rock/pebble/gravel major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Rock and Rocky Reefs major breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Rock and Rocky Reefs major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy major breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy-Mud major breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy-Mud major non-breeding
Marine Oceanic Epipelagic (0-200m) major breeding
Marine Oceanic Epipelagic (0-200m) major non-breeding
Marine Oceanic Mesopelagic (200-1000m) major breeding
Marine Oceanic Mesopelagic (200-1000m) major non-breeding
Altitude 0 - 250 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Utilisation

Purpose Primary form used Life stage used Source Scale Level Timing
Food (human) Whole Adults and juveniles Wild Subsistence, National Non-trivial Recent
Food (human) Whole Nestlings Wild Subsistence, National Non-trivial Recent
Pets Whole Adults and juveniles Wild International Non-trivial Recent

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2014) Species factsheet: Phaethon rubricauda. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 23/04/2014. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2014) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 23/04/2014.

This information is based upon, and updates, the information published in BirdLife International (2000) Threatened birds of the world. Barcelona and Cambridge, UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, BirdLife International (2004) Threatened birds of the world 2004 CD-ROM and BirdLife International (2008) Threatened birds of the world 2008 CD-ROM. These sources provide the information for species accounts for the birds on the IUCN Red List.

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

To contribute to discussions on the evaluation of the IUCN Red List status of Globally Threatened Birds, please visit BirdLife's Globally Threatened Bird Forums.

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Least Concern
Family Phaethontidae (Tropicbirds)
Species name author Boddaert, 1783
Population size mature individuals
Population trend Stable
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 105,000,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Summary information on this species