Observations of pelagic seabirds in the waters offshore Suriname, May-July 2012

M.N. de Boer, Andy C. Williams, Seven Consultancy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The pelagic seabird fauna inhabiting the waters offshore Suriname has hardly been described. Here we provide records for the occurrence of 18 pelagic seabird species. At least three of the observed seabird species represent new state records: Yellow-nosed Albatross (Thalassarche chlororhynchos), Band-rumped
Storm-Petrel (Oceanodroma castro) and Red-footed Booby (Sula sula). Another previously undocumented seabird in Suriname observed during this survey was Bulwer’s Petrel (Bulweria bulwerii), although this species was not verified by photographic evidence. An additional four seabird species represent the first
verified (at-sea) photographic records for Suriname: Audubon’s Shearwater (Puffinus lherminieri), Red-billed Tropicbird (Phaethon aethereus), Masked Booby (Sula dactylatra) and Pomarine Jaeger (Stercorarius pomarinus). The seabird (temporal) distribution and foraging concentrations of seabirds are presented for
the period 20 May – 24 July 2012. Strip-transect seabird counts (13 June to 24 July 2012) revealed that the offshore seabird community in Suriname is best described as primarily a surface-feeding community, dominated by plunge-diving shearwaters. The overall seabird abundance was low (0.59 birds/km) which is consistent for tropical equatorial offshore waters. The results highlight an increase both in the relative abundance and diversity of seabirds and the mortality amongst shearwaters in late June/early July. We recommend that more monitoring be carried out in order to gain a better understanding of the status of the different seabird species that occur in this tropical equatorial offshore region.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)474-491
JournalAcademic Journal of Suriname
Publication statusPublished - 2014


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