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Tropical Shearwater

TROPICAL SHEARWATER

Photo 1: Caroline Blanvillain – Photo 2: Lucie Faulquier – Photo 3: Steve Cranwell


APPEARANCE AND IDENTIFICATION

12 inches. Male and female identical in appearance. The top of the body is black-brown, the ventral side is white except for the wings which are black. A small black fringe on the leading edge of the wings. The black beak, is characteristic of this bird. It is hooked at its end and its tubular nostrils open on top of the beak.  It is much more elongated and tapered that the petrel’s beak. The legs are black and pink. In flight, it alternates long flight phases hovered at short wing beats flying very low on the surface of the water. Its tail is long and black.

Order: Procellariiformes

Family: Procellariidae

Category: Seabirds


LOCATION

Tropical and subtropical areas of Atlantic, Indian and Pacific. It breeds in the Tuamotu, Gambier, Marquesas, Society Islands and also Austral Islands (a few couples).


CHARACTERISTICS

In Tahiti, it nests on high cliffs. It also appreciates the atolls and volcanic islands. This bird fishes within 150 km around the islands where it breeds. It gains its colonies at night only.

Only around nesting sites and night. The call, often emitted in flight, is a series of sounds composed of an inhaled syllable followed by a series of exhaled syllables in rattle.

To listen the Tropical Shearwater:
https://www.xeno-canto.org/species/Puffinus-bailloni

Fish but mostly cephalopods. The bird fishes alone or, more rarely in groups.

Nests in burrows, cavities in cliff or under tufts of grass. Forms dense colonies. An egg 48 x 34 mm is laid. The breeding season seems very spread out.

Original text by Caroline BLANVILLAIN – Supplements and update by various members of the SOP Manu.

Bibliography:
https://inpn.mnhn.fr/espece/cd_nom/728081
http://avibase.bsc-eoc.org/species.jsp?avibaseid=AF8FDEB79B3D1C3B
http://www.oiseaux.net/oiseaux/puffin.de.baillon.html
http://ifrecor-doc.fr/items/show/1283
http://www.birdlife.org/datazone/species/factsheet/22734070
http://www.hbw.com/ibc/species/tropical-shearwater-puffinus-bailloni
https://www.iucnredlist.org/species/22734070/132308779

NAMES

Scientifique Name: Puffinus bailloni  Bonaparte, 1857

Polynesian Names:
Tira’o (Maupiti), karako (Mangareva), ka’ako (Marquesas)

LOCATION
  • Tuamotu, Gambier, Marquesas, Society, Austral
  • Tropical and subtropical Oceans

STATUS AND PROTECTION

The species is classified as “Least Concern” (LC) on the IUCN Red List.