At a Glance
Often shown in documentaries about the Galapagos, where pairs bow and shuffle and show off their blue feet, the Blue-footed Booby also nests as far north as western Mexico. In some years, small numbers stray north into the southwestern United States, mainly to the Salton Sea, California.
All bird guide text and rangemaps adapted from Lives of North American Birds by Kenn Kaufman© 1996, used by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Boobies and Gannets, Gull-like Birds
Coasts and Shorelines, Lakes, Ponds, and Rivers, Open Ocean
Range & Identification
32-34" (81-86 cm). Typical booby shape with heavy pointed bill, pointed tail, long wings. Looks dull at a distance, dark on wings, whitish below. White scaling on brown back; head finely streaked on adults, dingy on young birds. Feet blue, brightest on adults.
About the size of a Heron
Black, Blue, Brown, White
Long, Narrow, Pointed, Swept, Tapered
Songs and Calls
Usually silent; trumpeting and whistling noises on breeding grounds.
Sign up for Audubon's newsletter to learn more about birds like the Blue-footed Booby