All petrels have prominent tube-shaped nostrils. These are either on the sides of their bill (albatrosses) or on the top (all the other petrels). Northern giant petrels have particularly long tubes. Most petrels have a well-developed sense of smell, which helps them find food and their nesting place. The tubes also drain away excess salt, which is excreted from a gland above the eyes.
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Department of Conservation
Photograph by Tui De Roy
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