Fregatidae

views updated

Fregatidae (frigatebirds; class Aves, order Pelecaniformes) A family that comprises one genus, Fregata, of large, long-winged, slender-bodied, mainly black sea-birds that have long, deeply forked tails, long, slender, hooked bills, small feet with partial webbing, and strong claws, the middle one pectinate. Breeding males have a large, inflatable, bright-red throat pouch. They are good fliers, feeding on fish and other marine animals taken from other birds or from the surface of the sea. Their plumage is not waterproof and they do not land on water; they alight rarely on land, on which they walk clumsily. They roost and build their nests in bushes. There are five species, found in the tropical regions of the Pacific, Indian, and Atlantic oceans.

About this article

Fregatidae

Updated About encyclopedia.com content Print Article Share Article