Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Salvin's Albatross found on Gough Island in South Atlantic

Ross Wanless brings news of an adult SALVIN'S ALBATROSS (Thalassarche salvini) in the Atlantic Yellow-nosed Albatross (T. chlororhynchos) colony on Gough Island in the South Atlantic (-40.3207°, -9.92871°). Gough is part of the Tristan da Cunha archipelago. This photo was taken by Paul Visser, a biologist working on this remote island. The majority of Salvin's Albatrosses nest on the Bounty Islands in Sub-antarctic New Zealand, with smaller numbers on the Snares and a handful of pairs on Penguin Island in the Crozet Group (French Southern Territories) in the Indian Ocean. Salvin's occur in South African waters as non-breeders but are more numerous in the Pacific where they forage in the Humbolt Current as far north as Peru. To my knowledge, this is the first documented occurrence on land in the Atlantic Ocean. In Nov 2001, Javier Arata found an adult Salvin's with Black-browed Albatross (T. melanophrys) on Gonzalo Island in the Diego Ramirez Group off southern Chile (2003 Notornis 50:169).

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