Red-legged kittiwake Facts | Description | Range

red-legged kittiwake

The red-legged kittiwake, scientific name Rissa brevirostris is a seabird species within the gull family Laridae. This article will give an overview of red-legged kittiwake facts, range as well as the description.

Red-legged kittiwake facts

The red-legged kittiwake breeds within the Pribilof Islands, Bogoslof Island and Buldir Island within the Bering Sea off the coast of Alaska, and the Commander Islands, Russia and spends the winter at sea.


The red-legged kittiwake is a really localized subarctic Pacific species. Other than the distinguishing characteristic implicit in its title, it is extremely just like its higher identified relative, the black-legged kittiwake

Different variations embrace the shorter invoice, bigger eyes, a bigger, rounder head, and darker gray wings, and within the juveniles, which barely differ from the adults, missing the black tail band and ‘W’ throughout the wings of juvenile black-legged kittiwakes.

Juveniles take three years to succeed in maturity.

Adults are 35–39 cm (14–15 in) lengthy, with an 84–92 cm (33–36 in) wingspan and a physique mass of 325–510 g (11.5– oz).

Just like the Pacific race of black-legged kittiwake, the red-legged kittiwake has a well-developed hind toe.

As an occasional particular person, black-legged kittiwakes have reddish legs, any reviews of red-legged kittiwake away from the subarctic Pacific should report the entire different variations, not simply the leg color, for acceptance by bird recording authorities.


The red-legged kittiwake feeds on fish similar to lanternfish (Myctophidae), squid and invertebrates.

Red-legged kittiwake spends the summer time on the cliff breeding colonies, nesting on ledges, and migrates out to sea in September to overwinter within the north western Pacific Ocean and the Gulf of Alaska.

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This red-legged kittiwake species is listed as “Weak” by the IUCN as its inhabitants seem to be in decline.

The red-legged kittiwake has world inhabitants within the area of 337,000 to 377,000 mature people and its breeding vary is 192,000 sq. kilometres (74,000 sq mi).

Numbers of the red-legged kittiwake are thought to have decreased by about 35% between the mid-1970s and the mid-1990s although numbers could have stabilized since.

It’s unclear why they’ve declined, however, it could be associated with a change within the availability of prey, presumably related extreme industrial fishing or with the local weather change.

red-legged kittiwake

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