A rarity in the animal kingdom, the two largest types of frigatebirds coexist side by side in the Galapagos. Though their appearances and their feeding habits differ, the Great Frigatebird and the Magnificent Frigatebird nest in the same areas and it oftentimes requires the keen eye of a guide to discern which is which. Magnificent Frigatebirds are known to roam the seas in search of food, while the great frigatebird prefers to comb the coast. Both are well-known for the bright red gullar sacks that the males sport in an effort to impress their female counterparts, though the great frigatebird’s is slightly smaller and more intense in hue. Male magnificent frigates also have a slightly purple-black plumage while great frigate males have a hint of green on their shoulders.
Both kinds of frigatebirds can be found throughout the archipelago, though they are most commonly spotted in San Cristobal, Genovesa, and Espanola islands.