email a friend
printable version
Neotropical Cormorant Phalacrocorax brasilianus
BirdLife is updating this factsheet for the 2016 Red List
Please email us with any relevant information

IUCN Red List history

Year Category
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 not a migrant Forest dependency Does not normally occur in forest
Land mass type   Average mass -


  Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 18,000,000 medium
Extent of Occurrence non-breeding (km2) 18,000,000 medium
Number of locations -
Fragmentation -

Population & trend

  Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals poor Estimated 2009
Population trend Increasing -
Number of subpopulations - - -
Largest subpopulation - - -
Generation length (yrs) 8.7 - - -
Population justification: The population is estimated to number 2,000,000 individuals.
Trend justification: The overall population trend is increasing, although some populations have unknown trends (Wetlands International 2006). The population trend is increasing in North America (based on BBS/CBC data: Butcher and Niven 2007).

Country/Territory distribution

Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Breeding Non-breeding Passage Resident
Antigua and Barbuda Native Extant       Yes
Argentina Native Extant       Yes
Aruba (to Netherlands) Native Extant       Yes
Bahamas Native Extant       Yes
Barbados Native Extant       Yes
Belize Native Extant       Yes
Bolivia Native Extant       Yes
Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba (to Netherlands) Native Extant       Yes
Brazil Native Extant       Yes
Cayman Islands (to UK) Native Extant       Yes
Chile Native Extant       Yes
Colombia Native Extant       Yes
Costa Rica Native Extant       Yes
Cuba Native Extant       Yes
Curaçao (to Netherlands) Native Extant       Yes
Dominica Native Extant       Yes
Ecuador Native Extant       Yes
El Salvador Native Extant       Yes
French Guiana Native Extant       Yes
Guadeloupe (to France) Native Extant       Yes
Guatemala Native Extant       Yes
Guyana Native Extant       Yes
Honduras Native Extant       Yes
Jamaica Vagrant Extant   Yes    
Martinique (to France) Native Extant       Yes
Mexico Native Extant       Yes
Montserrat (to UK) Native Extant       Yes
Nicaragua Native Extant       Yes
Panama Native Extant       Yes
Paraguay Native Extant       Yes
Peru Native Extant       Yes
Puerto Rico (to USA) Native Extant       Yes
Sint Maarten (to Netherlands) Native Extant       Yes
St Kitts and Nevis Native Extant       Yes
St Lucia Native Extant       Yes
St Vincent and the Grenadines Native Extant       Yes
Suriname Native Extant       Yes
Trinidad and Tobago Native Extant       Yes
Turks and Caicos Islands (to UK) Native Extant       Yes
Uruguay Native Extant Yes      
USA Native Extant Yes      
Venezuela Native Extant       Yes
Virgin Islands (to UK) Vagrant Extant   Yes    
Virgin Islands (to USA) Vagrant Extant   Yes    

Important Bird Areas where this species has triggered the IBA criteria

Country/Territory IBA Name IBA link
Argentina Reserva de Uso Múltiple Bañados del Río Dulce y Laguna Mar Chiquita site factsheet
Brazil Reserva Particular do Patrimônio Natural SESC Pantanal e Entorno site factsheet
Chile Isla Chañaral site factsheet
Chile Islotes Pajaros site factsheet
Chile Monumento Natural Isla Cachagua site factsheet
Chile Reserva Nacional Pingüino de Humboldt - Isla Choros, Damas y Punta de Choros site factsheet
Colombia Parque Nacional Natural Sanquianga site factsheet
Ecuador Ciénaga de La Segua site factsheet
Guyana Shell Beach site factsheet
Mexico Complejo de Presas de Río Fuerte site factsheet
Mexico Laguna Cuyutlán y Estero Palo Verde site factsheet
Mexico Laguna de Tamiahua site factsheet
Mexico Lagunas del Playón de Mismaloya site factsheet
Mexico Presa Falcón site factsheet
Mexico Presa la Amistad site factsheet
Mexico Presa Marte R. Gómez site factsheet
USA Lower Salt and Gila Riparian Ecosystem site factsheet

Habitats & altitude

Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Marine Neritic Macroalgal/Kelp major resident
Marine Neritic Pelagic suitable resident
Marine Neritic Seagrass (Submerged) major resident
Marine Neritic Subtidal Loose Rock/pebble/gravel major resident
Marine Neritic Subtidal Rock and Rocky Reefs major resident
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy major resident
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy-Mud major resident
Wetlands (inland) Permanent Freshwater Lakes (over 8ha) suitable resident
Wetlands (inland) Permanent Rivers/Streams/Creeks (includes waterfalls) suitable resident
Altitude 0 - 5000 m Occasional altitudinal limits  


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

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2016) Species factsheet: Phalacrocorax brasilianus. Downloaded from on 28/10/2016. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2016) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 28/10/2016.

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 Phalacrocoracidae (Cormorants)
Species name author (Gmelin, 1789)
Population size mature individuals
Population trend Increasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 18,000,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Summary information on this species