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Magnificent Frigatebird Fregata magnificens
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 Medium
Land mass type   Average mass -


  Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 191,000
Extent of Occurrence non-breeding (km2) 11,300,000
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) 15.9 - - -
Trend justification: 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
Anguilla (to UK) Native Extant       Yes
Antigua and Barbuda Native Extant       Yes
Argentina Vagrant Extant   Yes    
Aruba (to Netherlands) Native Extant       Yes
Bahamas Native Extant       Yes
Barbados Native Extant       Yes
Belize Native Extant       Yes
Bermuda (to UK) Native Extant Yes      
Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba (to Netherlands) Native Extant       Yes
Brazil Native Extant       Yes
Canada Unknown Extant       Yes
Cape Verde Native Extant       Yes
Cayman Islands (to UK) Native Extant       Yes
Chile Vagrant Extant        
Colombia Native Extant       Yes
Costa Rica Native Extant       Yes
Cuba Native Extant       Yes
Curaçao (to Netherlands) Native Extant       Yes
Denmark Vagrant Extant   Yes    
Dominica Native Extant       Yes
Dominican Republic Native Extant       Yes
Ecuador Native Extant       Yes
El Salvador Native Extant       Yes
France Vagrant Extant   Yes    
French Guiana Native Extant       Yes
Gambia Vagrant Extant   Yes    
Grenada Native Extant       Yes
Guadeloupe (to France) Native Extant       Yes
Guatemala Native Extant       Yes
Guyana Native Extant       Yes
Haiti Native Extant       Yes
Honduras Native Extant       Yes
Jamaica Native Extant Yes      
Martinique (to France) Native Extant       Yes
Mauritania Vagrant Extant   Yes    
Mexico Native Extant       Yes
Montserrat (to UK) Native Extant       Yes
Nicaragua Native Extant       Yes
Panama Native Extant       Yes
Peru Native Extant       Yes
Portugal Vagrant Extant   Yes    
Puerto Rico (to USA) Native Extant Yes      
Senegal Unknown Extant        
Sint Maarten (to Netherlands) Native Extant       Yes
Spain Vagrant Extant   Yes    
St Kitts and Nevis Native Extant       Yes
St Lucia Native Extant       Yes
St Martin (to France) 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      
United States Minor Outlying Islands (to USA) Native Extant       Yes
Uruguay Native Extant   Yes    
USA Native Extant Yes      
Venezuela Native Extant       Yes
Virgin Islands (to UK) Native Extant       Yes
Virgin Islands (to USA) Native Extant       Yes
Western Sahara Unknown Extant        

Important Bird Areas where this species has triggered the IBA criteria

Country/Territory IBA Name IBA link
Anguilla (to UK) Dog Island site factsheet
Antigua and Barbuda Codrington Lagoon and the Creek site factsheet
Antigua and Barbuda Redonda site factsheet
Bahamas Cay Verde site factsheet
Bahamas Guana Cays site factsheet
Bahamas North Atlantic Abaco Cays site factsheet
Brazil Arquipélago dos Alcatrazes site factsheet
Brazil Ilhas dos Currais site factsheet
Cayman Islands (to UK) Booby Pond Nature Reserve site factsheet
Colombia Parque Nacional Natural Gorgona site factsheet
Cuba Gran Humedal del Norte de Ciego de Ávila site factsheet
Dominica L'llet site factsheet
Dominican Republic Del Este National Park site factsheet
Ecuador Isla de la Plata site factsheet
Ecuador Isla Santa Clara site factsheet
Ecuador Refugio de Vida Silvestre Isla Corazón e Isla Fragata site factsheet
French Guiana Connétable site factsheet
French Guiana Connétable - Marine site factsheet
Guyana Shell Beach site factsheet
Jamaica Black River Great Morass site factsheet
Jamaica Pedro Cays and Bank site factsheet
Jamaica Portland Ridge and Bight site factsheet
Martinique (to France) Pointe Pain de Sucre site factsheet
Mexico Bahia de Ceuta-Cospita site factsheet
Mexico Coastal hunedals of the North of the Peninsula of Yucatan site factsheet
Mexico Istmo de Tehuantepec-Mar Muerto site factsheet
Mexico The Encrucijada site factsheet
Nicaragua Bluefields Bay and adjacent landscape site factsheet
Nicaragua Booby Cay Island site factsheet
Puerto Rico (to USA) Mona and Monito site factsheet
St Vincent and the Grenadines All Awash Island site factsheet
St Vincent and the Grenadines Battowia Island site factsheet
St Vincent and the Grenadines Petit Canouan site factsheet
Trinidad and Tobago Soldado Rock site factsheet
Trinidad and Tobago St Giles Islands site factsheet
United States Minor Outlying Islands (to USA) Navassa site factsheet
Virgin Islands (to UK) Great Tobago site factsheet

Habitats & altitude

Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Forest Subtropical/Tropical Mangrove Vegetation Above High Tide Level major breeding
Marine Neritic Macroalgal/Kelp major resident
Marine Neritic Pelagic major 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
Marine Oceanic Epipelagic (0-200m) major resident
Marine Oceanic Mesopelagic (200-1000m) major resident
Altitude 0 - 0 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: Fregata magnificens. Downloaded from on 21/10/2016. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2016) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 21/10/2016.

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 Fregatidae (Frigatebirds)
Species name author Mathews, 1914
Population size mature individuals
Population trend Increasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 191,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Summary information on this species