Scientific Name: Diomedea exulans
Size: 80 to 135 cm Total Length; c. 200 cm Wingspan
What does it look like?
Its large size and white plumage, with fine black wavy lines on the breast neck and upper back, and mottled with black on the back, readily distinguish it. The Wandering Albatross has the longest wingspan of all bird species.
Where is it found?
The Wandering Albatross breeds on subantarctic islands, beginning in early December, but spends the majority of its life soaring low above the southern oceans.
What are its habitats & habits?
No other species of bird has grasped the admiration and respect of birdwatchers and fishermen alike. The Wandering Albatross may spend several days following a ship, gliding effortlessly on long slender wings, in all but the calmest winds. Birds will readily scavenge from fishing boats and the surface of the water, but squid and fish are the preferred food. This penchant for squid has made the bird at risk from the longlines that are used by ocean trawlers. The albatross becomes hooked and drowns as they take the bait and are then dragged along behind the boat.
This species features in my book Australia’s Birdwatching Megaspots