• Welcome to BirdForum, the internet's largest birding community with thousands of members from all over the world. The forums are dedicated to wild birds, birding, binoculars and equipment and all that goes with it.

    Please register for an account to take part in the discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.
ZEISS DTI thermal imaging cameras. For more discoveries at night, and during the day.

Antipodean Albatross - BirdForum Opus

Stub.png This article is incomplete.
This article is missing one or more sections. You can help the BirdForum Opus by expanding it.

Adult Antipodean Albatross (D. (e.) antipodensis). Note pink neck stain.
Photo © by martinuk. Kaikoura, New Zealand. 10 January 2010

A member of the Wandering Albatross complex

Includes Gibson's Albatross

Diomedea antipodensis


Subadult Antipodean Albatross (D. (e.) antipodensis).
Photo © by Ornitho26 at Kaikoura, New Zealand.


Nominate subspecies usually has a solid dark crown, adult Gibson's usually have some dark flecks in the crown but not solid.

Similar species

Snowy Albatross is larger with a longer bill, and longer wings that usually looks less dark. Tristan Albatross not as large as Snowy and therefore more similar to Antipodean, but neither of those two have the darker overall impression of mix of dark and white spots.

Amsterdam Albatross very similar to juveniles of this species but separated by black cutting edge and darker tip of bill. Notice that shadow effects sometimes given an impression of black cutting edge in Antipodean, so several photos with different angle usually needed to be sure.


New Zealand: breeds on Antipodes, Campbell islands, and the Auckland Islands. Ranges at sea at least from southeastern Indian Ocean to eastern Pacific Ocean near Chile.


Gibson's Albatross
Photo © by binus1963
Kaikora, South Island, New Zealand, 2017

The former Wandering Albatross complex is today split into four species:

  • Snowy Albatross (D. exulans) breeds on South Georgia, Prince Edward, Marion, Crozet, Kerguelen, Heard, McDonald and Macquire islands
  • Tristan Albatross (D. dabbenena) breeds on Inaccessible and Gough Islands (formerly also Tristan da Cunha)
  • Antipodean Albatross (D. antipodensis) breeds on Antipodes and Campbell islands; this species includes (D. a. gibsoni) from the Auckland Islands
  • Amsterdam Albatross (D. amsterdamensis) from the Amsterdam Island


Clements recognizes these subspecies[1]:

  • D. a, antipodensis
    • Breeds Antipodes Islands and (small numbers) Campbell Island (New Zealand); ranges at sea at least to Tasman Sea east across southern Pacific Ocean
  • D. a, gibsoni
    • Breeds Auckland Islands (New Zealand); ranges at sea at least from Tasman Sea to mid Pacific Ocean
Immature Antipodean Albatross
Photo © by Rodrigo Reyes at Humboldt Current, 10 nautical miles from Quintero, Chile, 23 November 2006


Breeds in higher ground on small islands, spends most of its life on or over the open sea.


Feeds on squid and other sea animals including fish and crayfish/crabs. Food is essentially taken from the surface or at least the upper meter of the sea.

Eggs are laid in the early parts of the year, and it takes about a year before the single young is able to fly. Birds are several years old before returning to nesting area, and 8-12 years old before actual breeding takes place. Adults breed every other year.


Croaking sounds similar to other members of this group.


  1. Clements, J. F., P. C. Rasmussen, T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, T. A. Fredericks, J. A. Gerbracht, D. Lepage, A. Spencer, S. M. Billerman, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2023. The eBird/Clements checklist of Birds of the World: v2023. Downloaded from https://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Gill, F, D Donsker, and P Rasmussen (Eds). 2023. IOC World Bird List (v 13.2). Doi 10.14344/IOC.ML.13.2. http://www.worldbirdnames.org/
  3. del Hoyo, J., C. Carboneras, F. Jutglar, N. Collar, G. M. Kirwan, and E. F. J. Garcia (2023). Antipodean Albatross (Diomedea antipodensis), version 1.0. In Birds of the World (F. Medrano and B. K. Keeney, Editors). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/bow.antalb1.01

Recommended Citation

External Links

GSearch checked for 2020 platform.1