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Australia
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Procellariiformes > Diomedeidae

White-capped Albatross

Thalassarche cauta

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Identification

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A medium-sized dark-backed albatross with pale underwings outlined by a narrow dark border and a dark notch in the armpit. The adult has a whitish head with grayish cheeks that give it a “white-capped” appearance. The gray-green bill has a yellowish tip to both mandibles. Juveniles are grayer on the head with gray bills. The species breeds on islands off Tasmania and New Zealand but disperses widely across the southern Oceans between 15 and 60°S, where it is a frequently encountered pelagic seabird. Similar albatrosses have a dark-tipped (not pale-tipped) lower half to the bill, and Salvin’s Albatross has a pale gray head and Chatham Albatross a slaty-gray head, further differentiating them from White-capped Albatross. Juveniles of these three are very difficult to separate.

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White-capped Albatross

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