What are frigatebirds?


Quick Answer

Frigatebirds are oceanic birds of tropical and subtropical regions. There are five species, all belonging to the genus Fregata. They are also known as man of war birds and pirate birds.

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Full Answer

Frigatebirds can have a wingspan of up to 7 1/2 feet. They have mostly black plumage and deeply forked tails. Males have brightly colored inflatable throat pouches used in courtship displays. They cannot swim and do not walk well but can stay airborne for up to a week. Frigatebirds breed on islands or in coastal mangrove swamps. They prey on flying fish, menhaden, squid, jellyfish and the eggs and chicks of seabirds including their own species.

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