Animalia > Chordata > Aves > Charadriiformes > Stercorariidae > Stercorarius > Stercorarius maccormicki

Stercorarius maccormicki (South Polar Skua)

Synonyms: Catharacta maccormicki

Wikipedia Abstract

The south polar skua (Stercorarius maccormicki) is a large seabird in the skua family Stercorariidae. An older name for the bird is MacCormick’s skua, after explorer and naval surgeon Robert McCormick, who first collected the type specimen. This species and the other large southern hemisphere skuas, together with great skua, are sometimes placed in a separate genus Catharacta.
View Wikipedia Record: Stercorarius maccormicki

EDGE Analysis

Uniqueness Scale: Similiar (0) 
 Unique (100)
Uniqueness & Vulnerability Scale: Similiar & Secure (0) 
 Unique & Vulnerable (100)
ED Score: 3.46091
EDGE Score: 1.49535


Adult Weight [1]  2.97 lbs (1.35 kg)
Birth Weight [2]  89.4 grams
Female Weight [1]  3.13 lbs (1.42 kg)
Male Weight [1]  2.82 lbs (1.28 kg)
Weight Dimorphism [1]  11.3 %
Clutch Size [2]  2
Maximum Longevity [4]  23 years 6 months
Migration [3]  Intercontinental


Name Countries Ecozone Biome Species Report Climate Land
Clipperton Island shrub and grasslands France Neotropic Tropical and Subtropical Grasslands, Savannas, and Shrublands  
Scotia Sea Islands tundra United Kingdom Antarctic Tundra    

Protected Areas

Name IUCN Category Area acres Location Species Website Climate Land Use
Aleutian Islands Biosphere Reserve 2720489 Alaska, United States    
California Coast Ranges Biosphere Reserve 153447 California, United States  
Cape Hatteras National Seashore II 21476 North Carolina, United States
Coorong National Park II 121235 South Australia, Australia
Farallon National Wildlife Refuge IV 352 California, United States
Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve II 366714 British Columbia, Canada
Olympic Biosphere Reserve II 922805 Washington, United States
Pacific Rim National Park Reserve II 137900 British Columbia, Canada
Palmer LTER Site Long Term Ecological Research   Antarctica    
Point Reyes National Seashore II 27068 California, United States
Redwood National Park II 77867 California, United States
Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area V 38440 California, United States

Prey / Diet

Aptenodytes forsteri (Emperor Penguin)[5]
Chaenocephalus aceratus (Scotian icefish)[5]
Daption capense (Cape Petrel)[5]
Deschampsia antarctica (Antarctic hair grass)[6]
Electrona antarctica (Lanternfish)[6]
Electrona carlsbergi (Electron subantarctic)[5]
Euphausia superba (Antarctic krill)[7]
Fulmarus glacialoides (Southern Fulmar)[5]
Gymnoscopelus braueri (Lanternfish)[5]
Krefftichthys anderssoni (Anderson's lanternfish)[5]
Leptonychotes weddellii (Weddell Seal)[5]
Mirounga leonina (Southern Elephant Seal)[5]
Oceanites oceanicus (Wilson's Storm-Petrel)[5]
Pagodroma nivea (Snow Petrel)[5]
Pagothenia borchgrevinki (Bald notothen)[8]
Pleuragramma antarctica (Antarctic silverfish)[9]
Polytrichum alpestre[6]
Protomyctophum choriodon (Lanternfish)[6]
Protomyctophum normani (Norman's lanterrnfish)[5]
Protomyctophum tenisoni (Lanternfish)[5]
Pygoscelis adeliae (Adelie Penguin)[5]
Thalassoica antarctica (Antarctic Petrel)[5]

Prey / Diet Overlap

Competing SpeciesCommon Prey Count
Aphrodroma brevirostris (Kerguelen Petrel)1
Aptenodytes forsteri (Emperor Penguin)4
Aptenodytes patagonicus (King Penguin)1
Arctocephalus gazella (Antarctic Fur Seal)4
Balaenoptera acutorostrata (Minke Whale)1
Daption capense (Cape Petrel)2
Eudyptes chrysolophus (Macaroni Penguin)2
Fulmarus glacialoides (Southern Fulmar)1
Halobaena caerulea (Blue Petrel)1
Lagenorhynchus cruciger (Hourglass Dolphin)1
Larus dominicanus (Kelp Gull)1
Leptonychotes weddellii (Weddell Seal)1
Lobodon carcinophaga (Crabeater Seal)1
Macronectes giganteus (Southern Giant Petrel)1
Megaptera novaeangliae (Humpback Whale)1
Mirounga leonina (Southern Elephant Seal)1
Oceanites oceanicus (Wilson's Storm-Petrel)1
Pachyptila belcheri (Slender-billed Prion)1
Pachyptila desolata (Antarctic Prion)1
Pachyptila turtur (Fairy Prion)1
Pagodroma nivea (Snow Petrel)3
Phoebetria palpebrata (Light-mantled Albatross)1
Procellaria aequinoctialis (White-chinned Petrel)1
Pygoscelis adeliae (Adelie Penguin)2
Pygoscelis antarcticus (Chinstrap Penguin)1
Pygoscelis papua (Gentoo Penguin)1
Sterna vittata (Antarctic Tern)1
Thalassarche chrysostoma (Grey-headed Albatross)2
Thalassarche melanophris (Black-browed Albatross)1


Parasitized by 
Haffneria grandis[10]
Tetrabothrius mawsoni[10]

Range Map



Attributes / relations provided by 1Higgins, PJ and Davies, SJJF (Eds). (1996). Handbook of Australian, New Zealand & Antarctic Birds. Vol. 3, Snipe to Pigeons. Oxford University Press, Melbourne 2Terje Lislevand, Jordi Figuerola, and Tamás Székely. 2007. Avian body sizes in relation to fecundity, mating system, display behavior, and resource sharing. Ecology 88:1605 3Myers, P., R. Espinosa, C. S. Parr, T. Jones, G. S. Hammond, and T. A. Dewey. 2006. The Animal Diversity Web (online). Accessed February 01, 2010 at 4de Magalhaes, J. P., and Costa, J. (2009) A database of vertebrate longevity records and their relation to other life-history traits. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 22(8):1770-1774 5Jorrit H. Poelen, James D. Simons and Chris J. Mungall. (2014). Global Biotic Interactions: An open infrastructure to share and analyze species-interaction datasets. Ecological Informatics. 6Diet of the south polar skua Catharacta maccormicki and the brown skua C. antarctica lonnbergi at Cierva Point, Antarctic Peninsula, Silvina L. Malzof, Rubén D. Quintana, Polar Biol (2008) 31:827–835 7DENSITIES OF ANTARCTIC SEABIRDS AT SEA AND THE PRESENCE OF THE KRILL EUPHAUSIA SUPERBA, BRYAN S. OBST, The Auk 102: 540-549. July 1985 8The role of notothenioid fish in the food web of the Ross Sea shelf waters: a review, M. La Mesa, J. T. Eastman, M. Vacchi, Polar Biol (2004) 27: 321–338 9Food of emperor penguins (Aptenodytes forsteri) in the western Ross Sea, Antarctica, Y. Cherel and G. L. Kooyman, Marine Biology (1998) 130: 335-344 10Species Interactions of Australia Database, Atlas of Living Australia, Version ala-csv-2012-11-19
Ecoregions provided by World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF). WildFinder: Online database of species distributions, ver. 01.06 WWF WildFINDER
Images provided by Google Image Search
Abstract provided by DBpedia licensed under a Creative Commons License
Weather provided by NOAA METAR Data Access