how fast is a frigate bird

History and etymology edit

During his first transatlantic voyage in 1492, Christopher Columbus passed the Cape Verde Islands and saw magnificent frigatebirds. His journal from the journey is preserved in a copy written by Bartolome de las Casas in the 1530s. [5] The entry for 29 September reads in English:

The term “rabiforçado” is written for the bird in the text from the fifteenth century. A frigatebird is known by its modern Spanish name, rabihorcado, which means “forked tail.” [5][6] The Cape Verde Islands formerly supported a population of magnificent frigatebirds, but it is most likely extinct today. [7].

The French name for the bird, La Frégate, which refers to a frigate or swift warship, is where the word “frigatebird” originates. [8] French naturalist Jean-Baptiste du Tertre provided the name’s etymology in 1667 while describing the magnificent frigatebird. [9][a] English mariners referred to frigatebirds as Man-of-War birds. The English explorer William Dampier used this name in his 1697 book An Account of a New Voyage Around the World:[10]

Eleazar Albin, an English naturalist and illustrator, gave the bird its current name, Frigate Bird, in his 1738 book A Natural History of the Birds. An illustration of the male bird with the red gular pouch was included in the book. [11] The English term, like the genus name, comes from the French name for the bird, la frégate, which is a frigate or swift warship used by French mariners. [12].

Magnificent, which comes from the Latin magnificus, which means “grand,” is the source of the English term “magnificent,” which belongs to the genus Fregata. [8].

Feeding edit

This species feeds mainly on fish, squid, jellyfish and crustaceans. The diet of each individual bird varies according to its age, gender, preferred hunting method, and availability of food [17]. [18].

It is a kleptoparasite, forcing other seabirds to open their mouths in order to swallow their food. When the other seabird is forced to regurgitate its meal, the magnificent frigatebird dives in and catches its prey before it reaches the water’s surface. [16].

Description edit Female juvenile

The magnificent frigatebird is the largest species of frigatebird. Its length ranges from 89 to 114 cm (2 ft 11 in to 3 ft 9 in), and its wingspan is 2 17–2. 44 cm (7 feet 1 inch to 8 feet 0 inches) and 1 kg. 1–1. 59 kg (2 lbs 7 oz – 3 pounds 8 oz) [13] During the breeding season, the all-black males have a scarlet throat pouch that swells up like a balloon. Despite being black, the scapular feathers exhibit a purple iridescence when exposed to sunlight, in contrast to the green sheen of the male great frigatebird. Although they are black, females of the species can be identified by their blue eye ring, brown band on their wings, and white breasts and lower neck sides. Immature birds have a white head and underparts.

With the exception of the lesser frigatebird, all of the other frigatebird species are quite similar to this one in size. However, juveniles have a unique belly patch shaped like a diamond, and it lacks a white axillary spur. The magnificent frigatebird produces a variety of rattling sounds at its nest, but it is silent when in flight.

It flies for two days at a time on average while it is in the air. 84 beat per second,[14] ground speed of 10 km/h (6. 2 mph), arriving at a destination as far away as 223 km (139 mi). They ascend and descend in thermals, reaching varying heights of up to 2,500 meters (8,200 feet) and getting close to the sea surface. [15].

  • Chick on a nest
  • Juvenile Above Isla Isabela
  • Juvenile
  • Male with partial inflated throat pouch
  • Juvenile in flight, Galapagos Islands
  • Male in flight, Galapagos Islands
  • Female in flight, Galapagos Islands
  • Male, Mexico
  • Female, Panama


How fast is a frigatebird in mph?

Magnificent frigatebirds do all this at remarkable speeds, reaching an estimated 95 mph (153 km/h) during flight. Males have a distinctive red pouch below their beaks which they inflate during breeding.

What bird can fly 60 mph?

Racing pigeons can fly at speeds of 60 mph in level flight, however on May 8, 1965, a race was held at which 1,428 pigeons were released, and backed by a powerful south/southwest wind, the winning bird was clocked at 110.07 mph. The world’s slowest flying birds are the American woodcock.

How far can frigate birds fly?

The data reveal that these birds cover substantial distances, traveling on average 410 kilometers or 255 miles, each day. On average, the birds stayed aloft for 41 days without landing, with one juvenile staying aloft for more than two months.