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Chatham Island Shag

Leucocarbo onslowi


A rare endemic shag is only found in the Chatham Islands. In looks, very similar to the King Shag (Leucocarbo carunculatus) and pied morph of the Stewart Island Shag (Leucocarbo chalcootus) but the three species do not overlap in range. A large black and white shag, shows a small white wing bar in flight, with pink feet and yellow/orange caruncles above the bill, blue eye ring and red/orange gular pouch below bill.


Chatham Island group with the largest breeding colony on the Star keys. Found at both the large lagoon on the main island and also a limited range at sea.


This species has a Red List status of 'critically endangered'. Annual counts have never put this species at above 1,000 pairs. Was named after a past governor of New Zealand Lord William Onslow in 1893 by H Forbes.

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triggsturner 7 years ago

Thanks Mark.

Mark Ridgway
Mark Ridgway 7 years ago

Brilliant. Another fascinating Chatham endemic.

triggsturner 7 years ago

Thank you armadeus.4 These birds are not easy, I was lucky enough to spend 2 days in the Chatham Group, to be fair the weather wasnt great and this was the only Chatham Is Shag I saw. A lone bird that flew over the ship once. Right time, right place I guess! My pleasure to share with you guys.

armadeus.4 7 years ago

Glorious shots! I never had the pleasure of seeing one of these birds when I went to NZ many years time :) Thank you for sharing.

Spotted by

Chatham Islands, New Zealand

Spotted on Nov 11, 2013
Submitted on Apr 10, 2015

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