Swain's Atoll

IBA Criteria

Year of most recent IBA criteria assessment: 2012

Populations of IBA trigger species
Species Current IUCN Red List Category Season Year(s) of estimate Population estimate IBA Criteria Triggered
Common White Tern Gygis alba LC breeding 1966 3,000 individuals A4i

Note: This table presents the IBA criteria triggered and the species that triggered then at the time of assessment, the current IUCN Red List category may vary from that which was in place at that time.

For more information about the IBA assessment process and criteria please click here

IBA Protection

Protected Area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)
National Marine Sanctuary of American Samoa National Marine Sanctuary 3,537,370 protected area overlaps with site 0


IUCN Habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial/Terrestrial Coconut plantations -
Marine Intertidal -
Forest Beach and atoll forest -
Marine Neritic -
Marine Coastal/Supratidal -
For further information about the habitat classification please click here.

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
not utilised -
For further information about the land use classification please click here.

Land ownership
The customary owners of Swain's Island were the Tokelauans of Fakaofo. The island came into private ownership in 1856, when the coconut plantations were established, and remains a private estate owned by the Jennings family. The island is a sovereign (flag) possession of the U.S.A. (Volk 1993).

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2022) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Swain's Atoll. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 08/12/2022.