Blue Noddy Anous ceruleus


Taxonomic note
Cibois et al. (2016) found that Procelsterna sits within Anous, which is accepted and results in P. cerulea changing name to Anous ceruleus (HBW and BirdLife International 2018). Procelsterna cerulea and P. albivitta (del Hoyo and Collar 2014) were previously lumped as P. cerulea following Sibley and Monroe (1990, 1993).

Taxonomic source(s)
Cibois, A., Thibault, J.-C., Rocamora, G. & Pasquet, E. 2016. Molecular phylogeny and systematics of Blue and Grey Noddies (Procelsterna). Ibis 158: 433-438.
del Hoyo, J., Collar, N.J., Christie, D.A., Elliott, A. and Fishpool, L.D.C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Volume 1: Non-passerines. Lynx Edicions BirdLife International, Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge, UK.
Handbook of the Birds of the World and BirdLife International. 2018. Handbook of the Birds of the World and BirdLife International digital checklist of the birds of the world. Version 3. Available at:

IUCN Red List criteria met and history
Red List criteria met
Critically Endangered Endangered Vulnerable
- - -

Red List history
Year Category Criteria
2018 Least Concern
2016 Least Concern
2014 Least Concern
Species attributes

Migratory status not a migrant Forest dependency does not normally occur in forest
Land-mass type Average mass 72 g

Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence (breeding/resident) 61,000,000 km2
Extent of Occurrence (non-breeding) 38,800,000 km2
Severely fragmented? no -
Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
Population size unknown - - -
Population trend stable - suspected -
Generation length 9.1 years - - -

Population justification: The combined populations of Anous ceruleus and A. albivitta are estimated to number 27,000-120,000 individuals, but the total for A. cerulea is unknown.

Trend justification: The overall population trend is stable, although some populations have unknown trends (Delany and Scott 2006).

Country/territory distribution
Country/Territory Presence Origin Resident Breeding visitor Non-breeding visitor Passage migrant
American Samoa extant native yes
Australia extant native yes
Cook Islands extant native yes
Fiji extant native yes
French Polynesia extant native yes
Japan extant native yes
Kiribati extant native yes
Marshall Islands extant native yes
Micronesia, Federated States of extant native
Nauru extant uncertain
New Caledonia (to France) extant native yes
Niue (to New Zealand) extant uncertain
Norfolk Island (to Australia) presence uncertain uncertain
Pitcairn Islands (to UK) presence uncertain uncertain
Samoa extant native yes
Solomon Islands extant uncertain
Tokelau (to New Zealand) extant uncertain
Tonga presence uncertain uncertain
Tuvalu extant native yes
United States Minor Outlying Islands (to USA) extant uncertain
USA extant native yes
Vanuatu extant uncertain
Wallis and Futuna Islands (to France) extant native yes

Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA)
Country/Territory IBA Name
French Polynesia Ilots rocheux de Rapa et Marotiri
Norfolk Island (to Australia) Phillip Island (Norfolk Island)
Australia Lord Howe Island Permanent Park Preserve (Lord Howe Island IBA)
Chile Isla Sala y Gómez
USA Northwestern Hawaiian Islands
Norfolk Island (to Australia) Norfolk Island / Phillip Island - Marine
United States Minor Outlying Islands (to USA) Jarvis Island
Kiribati Rawaki (Phoenix Island)
Kiribati Phoenix Islands Marine
United States Minor Outlying Islands (to USA) Jarvis Island Marine
New Caledonia (to France) Île Matthew Marin
French Polynesia Marotiri Marine
French Polynesia Rapa Marine
French Polynesia Hatu iti
New Caledonia (to France) Île Matthew
French Polynesia Hatu Iti Marine

Habitats & altitude
Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Marine Coastal/Supratidal Sea Cliffs and Rocky Offshore Islands major breeding
Marine Neritic Macroalgal/Kelp major resident
Marine Neritic Pelagic major resident
Marine Neritic Seagrass (Submerged) major resident
Marine Neritic Subtidal Loose Rock/pebble/gravel major resident
Marine Neritic Subtidal Rock and Rocky Reefs major resident
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy major resident
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy-Mud major resident
Marine Oceanic Epipelagic (0-200m) suitable resident
Marine Oceanic Mesopelagic (200-1000m) suitable resident
Altitude   Occasional altitudinal limits  

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Species factsheet: Anous ceruleus. Downloaded from on 03/12/2023.
Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2023) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 03/12/2023.