A gull-like predator, rarely seen on land except at tundra nesting grounds. Has a thicker torso and heavier bill than other jaegers. Alternate Adult has elongated central tail feathers that twist and broaden to a rounded tip. Range of color morphs; body may be completely dark or, in light morph, have pale belly, black wings and back, yellow neck, and dark cap. Light morph adults shows dark vertical barring along the flanks that is absent in other adult jaegers. Basic Adult similar but with smudgier markings, lacks long tail. Sexes are similar. Juveniles are blackish or dark cinnamon-brown with light scalloping on back and wings. In flight, note elongated tail feathers on adults and white patch on primaries. Parasitic Jaeger is slimmer, lighter, and has pointed central tail feathers. Long-tailed Jaeger is much slimmer, grayer above, and has shorter, thinner bill, and, in alternate plumage, has very long tail feathers.
Length: 47 (cm) Wingspan: 132 (cm)
Usually silent in winter. Near nest site, barks and nasal yelps.
Open ocean; rarely seen from shore. Nests on tundra.
Nest is a depression on ground. Harasses gulls and other seabirds. Typically seen from a boat; singly or in small, loose groups.
Opportunistic; eats fish, voles, lemmings, chicks and eggs of other birds, carrion, garbage. Steals food from other birds.
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