Order Suliformes

**This page will be getting updated on a semi-irregular schedule as I am going to be looking for scientific papers to gather more information on the order as currently most pages are rather scarce on basic information on the order.

This is another order that has been ‘reorganized/regrouped’ over the years. Up until about a decade or so, these birds had been grouped within the order Pelecaniformes (which is where they’re located in my Sibley Guide to Birds). It wasn’t until ~2010 and numerous genomic studies that they were placed within their own order (the Suliformes).

They’d been grouped with other birds within Pelecaniformes due to the fact that all four of their toes are webbed.

Double-crested cormorants flying over Boomer Lake, Stillwater OK

This order consists of four families that are primarily coastal sea birds (though some do winter on southern inland waters). Since they’re primarily coastal sea birds–their diet consists mainly of fish.

There is at least one member within each family that can be spotted along a coast in North America, and those represented family members are:

  1. Family Fregatidae (the frigatebirds)
    • Magnificent Frigatebird
  2. Family Phalacrocoracidae (cormorants and shags)
    • Great cormorant
    • Double-crested cormorant
    • Neo-tropic cormorant
    • Brandt’s cormorant (shag)
    • Pelagic cormorant (shag)
    • Red-faced cormorant (shag)
  3. Family Anhingidae (the Anhinga)
    • Anhinga
  4. Family Sulidae (Boobies and gannets)
    • Northern gannet
    • Masked booby
    • Brown booby
    • Blue-footed booby
    • Red-footed booby

Photography goals for this order include getting a better picture of the magnificent frigatebird (along with a picutre of the male puffing out its neck pouch), and then a picture of the anhinga, a booby and gannet; plus getting a picture of one off the coast of each continent (if possible)

References: www.birdsofallorders.com/suliformes.htm and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/suliformes