Birds of North Carolina:
their Distribution and Abundance
Black-browed Albatross - Thalassarche melanophris
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General Comments Although the Black-browed Albatross is a relatively abundant bird of sub-Antarctic waters, even more so than Yellow-nosed Albatross, it is surprising that extremely few -- many fewer than Yellow-nosed -- have turned up along the Atlantic coast of the United States and Canada. Even though there had been 10-20 sightings along the North Atlantic, the first documented record for North America (photo) wasn't until 6 Feb 1999, when one was photographed off the Virginia coast. One of those unconfirmed sightings was off the North Carolina coast; unfortunately, it was in the era when pelagic birding was mostly limited to birders riding on head boats, whose captains steered the boats to fishing hotspots, not to rare birds. Fortunately, North Carolina got its own documented record, with a bird photographed in 2012.
Breeding Status Nonbreeder
NC BRC List Definitive
State Status
U.S. Status
State Rank SA
Global Rank G3G4
Coastal Plain Accidental visitor. One was well-seen and photographed at very close range on a pelagic trip out of Hatteras on 18 Feb 2012* [Chat 77:6-10 link], [Chat 78:48-52 link], (N.A. Birds 66:201, 66:257). The only other report was of two birds seen at a distance well off Morehead City on 19 Aug 1972* (Am. Birds 27:739-740). An earlier NC BRC did not accept the sighting to that species, whereas the latest Committee did accept this record, in 1990 [Chat 54:53 link].
Piedmont No records.
Mountains No records.
Finding Tips
1/2 *
Attribution LeGrand[2018-02-01], LeGrand[2015-12-08], Howard[2013-05-29]
NC Map
Map depicts all counties with a report (transient or resident) for the species.
Click on county for list of all known species.