Story: Seabirds – overview

A tiny storm petrel (2nd of 2)

A tiny storm petrel

The smallest petrels are the storm petrels, with most species measuring about 20 centimetres and weighing 35–50 grams. Several million white-faced storm petrels breed on islands around New Zealand, nesting in burrows up to 1 metre long. They feed on small animal plankton on the surface of the sea, pattering the water with their large webbed feet and fluttering their wings, so they can feed without having to alight. Despite their small size, storm petrels can fly long distances.

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Department of Conservation
Reference: 10054736
Photograph by Don Merton

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How to cite this page:

Kerry-Jayne Wilson, 'Seabirds – overview - Who are the seabirds?', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/photograph/5470/a-tiny-storm-petrel (accessed 11 August 2020)

Story by Kerry-Jayne Wilson, published 12 Jun 2006, reviewed & revised 17 Feb 2015