Even more Seabirds.
Snowy sheathbills, Chionis alba, Grytviken, South Georgia.ia.
Sheathbills' diet is similar to that of
skuas. Their flight is a bit clumsy, but they are mostly migratory
breeding from South Georgia south and wintering in South America
and the Falklands. They are related to plovers and, unlike
other seabirds, don't have webbed feet. This species only
breeds in Scotia Sea area, with total population estimated
at 10,000 pairs. Most of them hang out around penguin colonies
in summer, and garbage dumps in winter. They are very tame.
Drygalski Fjord, South Georgia.
a family of birds, Chionidae. Classified in the wader
order Charadriiformes, the family contains one genus, Chionis,
with only two species. They breed on subantarctic islands
and the Antarctic Peninsula, and the Snowy Sheathbill, Chionis
to the Falkland Islands and coastal southern South America
southern winter; they are the only bird family endemic as
breeders to the Antarctic region. They are also the only Antarctic
birds without webbed feet.
The other specimen is the Black-faced Sheathbill, Chionis
minor, also known as the Lesser Sheathbill or
Paddy bird, is an aberrant shorebird which are terrestrial
scavenger of subantarctic islands.
Restricted to subantarctic islands in the southern Indian
Ocean: the South African territory of the Prince Edward Islands,
the French territories of the Crozet Islands and Kerguelen
Islands, and the Australian territory of Heard Island. The
race Chionis minor nasicornis is endemic to Heard Island,
while the race Chionis minor marionesis
is endemic to the Prince Edward Islands.
shags, Phalacrocorax atriceps,
Beagle Channel, Tierra del Fuego.
shags, Phalacrocorax georgianus,
Elsehul, South Georgia.
Blue-eyed shags inhabit rocky cliffs on all island groups
around the Scotia Sea. Recent DNA research suggested that
three very similar races are,
in fact, separate species: Imperial shag, Phalacrocorax
atriceps, in South America and the Falklands, South
Georgian Shag, Phalacrocorax georgianus, on South
Georgia, South Orkney and South Sandwich Islands, and Antarctic
shag, Phalacrocorax bransfieldensis, on South Shetlands
and the Peninsula.
Three more species of cormorants occur on Tierra del Fuego.
All are mostly sedentary, and hunt for fish not far from
shore, sometimes in large flocks.
Tierra del Fuego
Tierra del Fuego
Imperial Shags in the Beagle
Channel, Southern Argentina
Note the blue eyes!
The Imperial Shag
, Phalacrocorax atriceps
, is a
black and white cormorant native to many subantarctic islands,
the Antarctic Peninsula and southern South America, primarily
in rocky coastal regions, but locally also at large inland
lakes. It is sometimes placed in the genus Leucocarbo instead.
It is also known as the Blue-eyed Shag, Blue-eyed Cormorant
and by many other names, and is one of a larger group of cormorants
called blue-eyed shags.
The taxonomy is very complex, and several subspecies are often
considered separate species instead.
The Imperial Shag has a total length of 7078 cm (2831
in) and weighs 1.8-3.5 kg (4-8 lbs), with males averaging
larger than females. It is endowed with glossy black feathers
covering most of its body, with a white belly and neck. It
possesses a distinctive ring of blue skin around its eyes,
an orange-yellow nasal knob, pinkish legs and feet, and an
erectile black crest. During the non-breeding season, adults
lack the crest, have a duller facial area, and less/no white
to the back/wings.
gaimardi North of Bahía del Oso Marino,
near Puerto Deseado, Santa Cruz (Argentina).
Sergio Bogan, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Cormoran_gris_en_Puesto_del_japones.jpg
Cormorant, Phalacrocorax gaimardi, also known as the Red-legged
Shag, Red-footed Cormorant, Red-footed Shag, Gaimards
Cormorant and Grey Cormorant, is a resident of the coastline
South America. It is non-colonial unlike most seabirds.
The Red-legged Cormorant has not been observed wing-spreading,
which is characteristic of most cormorant species. It is considered
near threatened under the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
The Red-legged Cormorant is a medium sized seabird, with a
long neck, streamlined body, webbed feet and a long, thin
hooked bill. Its body length is 7176 centimetres (2830
in), with an average wingspan of 91 cm (36 in).
It weighs 1.31.5 kilograms (2.93.3 lb). There
is no sexual dimorphism between the male and female
Tierra del Fuego..
are so called because their often run across water
surface, flapping their wings as an old steamer boat with
sidewheels. The widespread flying species, Tachyeres patachonicus
is apparently the ancestor of flightless Magellanic steamerduck,
, on Tierra del Fuego, and Falkland
steamerduck, Tachyeres brachypterus
, on the Falklands.
See more here
steamerduck, Gypsy Cove,
Beagle Channel, Tierra del Fuego..
and Magellanic steamerducks with chicks,
female Kelp Goose on the far end of Bertha's Beach, East Falkland.
The Kelp Goose
(Spanish: Caranca or Cauquén Marino),
, is a member of the duck, goose and
swan family Anatidae. It is in the shelduck subfamily Tadorninae.
It can be found in the Southern part of South America; in
Patagonia, Tierra del Fuego, and the Falkland Islands.
Kelp geese inhabit areas of southern Chile and Argentina,
mainly in Patagonia, Tierra del Fuego, and the Falkland Islands.
They habitat rocky coasts around their food sources.
Males are a white color, with a black beak, and yellow feet.
The females are dark brown, with
transverse gray lines on the chest, and yellow feet.
Kelp geese generally have clutches of 2-7 eggs. They prefer
to hide their eggs in long grass.
The eggs hatch about a month later.
There are about 15,000 breeding pairs in existence. Kelp geese
are noted for only eating kelp and
along the coast of South America in order to find kelp, hence
the name 'kelp geese'.
Gypsy Cove, Falkland Islands.
On rocky shores of Tierra del Fuego and the Falklands, steamerducks
are often joined by kelp geese, beautiful birds with striking
sexual dimorphism. Numerous other coastal waterbirds that
occur there range in size from tiny grebes to black-necked
swan with chicks,
Gypsy Cove, Falkland Islands.
Swan at Paignton Zoo, Devon, England.
Photographed by Adrian Pingstone in July 2003
The Black-necked Swan
, Cygnus melancoryphus, is the
largest waterfowl native to South America.
Males are 115 to 140 cm (45 to 55 in) and weigh 4.5-6.7 kg
(10-14.8 lbs); females are 100 to 124 cm
(39 to 49 in) and weigh 3.5-4.4 kg (7.79.7 lbs). The
wingspan ranges from 135 to 177 cm (53 to 70 in).
The body plumage is white with a black neck, head and greyish
bill. It has a red knob near the base of the bill
and white stripe behind eye. The sexes are similar, with the
female slightly smaller. The cygnet has a light grey plumage
with black bill and feet. The Black-necked Swan was formerly
placed in monotypic genus, Sthenelides.
The smallest member in its genus, it is found in freshwater
marshes, lagoon and lake shores in southern South America.
The Black-necked Swan breeds in Chilean Southern Zone, Patagonia,
Tierra del Fuego and on the Falkland Islands. In the austral
winter, this species
northwards to Paraguay and southern Brazil
The wetlands created by the Great Chilean Earthquake like
Carlos Anwandter Nature Sanctuary in Cruces River have become
important population centers for the Black-necked Swan.
Crested ducks, Anas specularioides,
Tierra del Fuego National Park
Ducks (Lophonetta specularioides) on Seno Ultima Esperanza,
The Crested Duck
, Lophonetta specularioides
a species of duck native to South America, the only member
of the monotypic genus Lophonetta. It is sometimes included
There are two subspecies: Andean Crested Duck, Lophonetta
and Patagonian Crested Duck, Lophonetta
. The Patagonian Crested
Duck is also called the Southern Crested Duck and its range
lies in the Falklands, Chile, and Argentina.
It feeds on invertebrates and algae, and prefers shallow coastal
regions. It nests in tall grass near water
and lays 5 to 7 eggs.
Nycticorax nycticorax, Gypsy Cove.
This coastal bird community also includes
night-herons, plovers, oystercatchers, snipes, kingfishers,
birds of prey, four species of small birds called cinclodes,
and numerous wintering waders from the Northern hemisphere.
Of all those, only two species of ducks have made it to South
Georgia. The islands further south have only seabirds.
Let's start the tour of Scotia Sea islands from where all
(Cinclodes patagonicus), Ushuaia.
Photo: Alain Carpentier, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Bihoreau_Gris.jpg
The Black-crowned Night Heron
, Nycticorax nycticorax
commonly abbreviated to just Night Heron in Eurasia, is a
medium-sized heron found throughout a large part of the world,
except in the coldest regions and Australasia (where replaced
by the closely related Rufous Night Heron, with which it has
hybridized in the area of contact).
Adults are approximately 64 cm (25 in) long and weigh 800
g (28 oz). They have a black crown and back with the remainder
of the body white or grey, red eyes, and short yellow legs.
They have pale grey wings and white underparts
de Laja, Chil
|The Dark-bellied Cinclodes, Cinclodes patagonicus,
is a species of bird in the Furnariidae family. It is found
in Argentina and Chile. Its natural habitats are rivers and
rocky shores. The Dark-bellied Cinclodes is distributed in Chile
from about Santiago southwards to Tierra del Fuego and in adjacent
areas of extreme western Argentina. It is found near streams,
lakes and marshlands from sea level up to 2,500 m. It has a
bold white supercilium and throat.
The Austral Thrush
Stanley, Falkland Is.
The Falklands don't have the dramatic mountain
landscapes of other Scotia Sea islands. It's a land of low
rolling hills and countless small bays, channels, and inlets.
It is a perfect place for hiking, with trails leading across
the grasslands to cozy hidden coves full of seabirds.
Tierra del Fuego Nat'l Park.
( Turdus falcklandii ) is a species of bird,
passerine of the family Turdidae .
It inhabits the southern tip of South America. From the southern Atacama
Desert , to Tierra del Fuego .
It measures about 24 centimeters. His head and tail are brownish,
with white feathers on the underside.
Its legs are yellow-orange, and the peak somewhat clearer.
It is interesting to see the skill with which it sought and found
the worms in the earth, which constitute an important part of its
diet. Eats insects and snails. Their flight is fast, short and wavy.
picta (Upland goose - Cauquén Comun), El Calafate,
Santa Cruz, Argentina. August
Dany - www.fabiendany.com
The Upland Goose or Magellan Goose
, Chloephaga picta,
is a South American member of the duck, goose and swan family
Anatidae. It is in the shelduck subfamily, Tadorninae. Males
have a white head and breast, whereas
the females are brown with black-striped wings and yellow
feet, and could be mistaken for Ruddy-headed Geese. These
birds are 6072.5 centimetres (2428.5 in) long
and weigh 2.73.2 kilograms (6.07.1 lb).
They are found in open grasslands.
Upland Geese are noted in Chapter VI of The Origin of Species
for having vestigial webbing between their toes.
Stanley, Falkland Islands.
Unfortunately, the only native land mammal, Falkland Islands
fox (D. australis), has been exterminated in the 19th century.
Introduced mammals include Patagonian foxes, feral cats, rabbits,
rats, mice, and, on one small island, guanaco. Numerous marine
inhabit surrounding waters. Of about 70 breeding
bird species, two - Cobb's wren (above) and Falkland steamerduck
are endemic; two more are very rare on the mainland. There
are also many endemic bird subspecies, four unique freshwater
fishes, and at least twelve endemic plants.
|The Correndera Pipit, Anthus correndera, is a species
of bird in the Motacillidae family. It is found in Argentina,
Bolivia, southern Brazil, Chile, the Falkland Islands, Paraguay,
Peru, and Uruguay. Its natural habitats are temperate grassland,
subtropical or tropical high-altitude grassland, and pastureland.
coccineum is called "notro" on Tierra del Fuego,
and "duddle-dee" on the Falklands..
firetree, Chilean firebush, Notro in Spanish, Embothrium
coccineum, is a small evergreen tree
in the family Proteaceae. It grows in the temperate forests
of Chile and Argentina.
It produces deep red flowers (occasionally pale yellow) which
group in clusters; blooming occurs in spring.
The fruit is a dry follicle, with about 10 seeds inside.
tree in flower
are large shrubs or trees growing to
415 m (1350 ft) tall and can reach 50 cm (20 in)
The bark is dark grey with light spots.
Its wood is light pink color, and besides for being very soft
but durable, is used for elaborating spoons,
kitchen vessels and another craft articles.
Albatross, Albatros real del sur, Diomedea epomophora
Royal Albatross, Diomedea epomophora, Scotiahavet
Mar afuera, frente a Valparaiso.
Copyright © Pablo
The Southern Royal Albatross
, Diomedea epomophora, is a large
seabird from the albatross family.
At an average wingspan of around 3 m (9.8 ft), it is the second largest
albatross, behind the Wandering Albatross.
The Southern Royal Albatross has a length of 112123 cm (4448
in) and a mean weight of 8.5 kg (19 lb).
Males are about 2 to 3 kg (4.4 to 6.6 lb) heavier than females. Average
wingspan has been reported from
2.9 to 3.28 m (9.5 to 10.8 ft), with an upper limit of about 3.51
m (11.5 ft).
Striated Caracara, Phalcoboenus australis
|The Striated Caracara, Phalcoboenus australis,
is a bird of prey of the Falconidae family.
The adults' plumage is almost black in colour, while the legs
and lores are orange and the neck is flecked with grey.
The first year juveniles have an orange or light red down, which
they lose after their first molt. Full adult plumage is
acquired only in the fifth year.
Caracara (Phalcoboenus australis), Falkland Islands
Photo: Ben Tubby
It breeds in several islands in Tierra del Fuego, but is more
abundant in the Falklands. Though it was once considered
common in the Falklands archipelago, it now only nests in the
outlying islands where it breeds around penguin and
The Striated Caracara is primarily a scavenger, feeding on carrion,
offal and small invertebrates that it digs up with its claws.
However it will also prey on weak or injured creatures, such
as young seabirds. Its habit of attacking newborn lambs and
weakened sheep has led it to be ruthlessly persecuted by sheep
Often it is known to steal red objects such as clothing or handkerchiefs,
possibly because red is the colour of meat.
Like all falconiformes it has excellent colour vision which
easily surpasses that of any known mammal. Often it will
also raid dustbins and move rocks to get food from underneath,
thus proving themselves to be one of the most
intelligent of the birds of prey.
Digital Motion, London
The nest is built on the ground or on a cliff ledge, where the
female will lay up to 4 eggs. Their hatching is timed to coincide
with the nesting season of seabirds, providing a constant food
supply for the chicks. Once these have fledged, they gather
into flocks and roam through the islands, often close to human
The population in the Falklands is estimated at 500 breeding
pairs. Juveniles and indeed, adults, are almost entirely
fearless of humans and treat their approach with indifference.
Over time, conflict with the sheep farmers has led to a
great reduction in their numbers. This is now being corrected
by the Falkland Islanders.
Part 5: The Great Marine Mammals
Back to part 3.
pictures, unless otherwise stated, Copyright © Vladimir