Ancient Murrelet

Synthliboramphus antiquus

Order

CHARADRIIFORMES

Family

Auks, Murres and Puffins (Alcidae)

Code 4

ANMU

Code 6

SYNANT

ITIS

Egg Color:

Light to olive brown, sometimes speckled.



Number of Eggs:

1 - 2



Incubation Days:

33 - 36



Egg Incubator:

Both sexes



Nest Location:

On ground.



Nest Material:

Lined with dry grass, twigs, and leaves.



Migration:

Nonmigratory



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General

Ancient Murrelet: Small, pelagic seabird with black head and dark gray back and wings. White underparts extend up onto face as a cheek patch. Bill is short and yellow. Sexes are similar. An open ocean species vaguely resembling a small penguin that can fly.

Range and Habitat

Ancient Murrelet: Breeds on offshore islets of north Pacific and mainland shores south to central British Columbia. Spends winters south to southern California; also winters in Asia. All known colonies are on forested islands where the major trees are Sitka spruce, western hemlock and western red cedar.

Breeding and Nesting

Ancient Murrelet: One to two large, light to olive brown eggs, sometimes speckled with blue and brown, are laid in a nest made of dried grass in a burrow or fallen log from late April to mid-May. Incubation ranges from 33 to 36 days and is carried out by both parents.

Foraging and Feeding

Ancient Murrelet: Diet consists of small fish, crustaceans, and mollusks; forages by diving from the surface.

Vocalization

Ancient Murrelet: Emits low, shrill whistling notes.

Similar Species

Ancient Murrelet: Marbled Murrelet has dark bill and white patch on flanks.

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UnderpartsX

Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.

FaceX
The front part of the head consisting of the bill, eyes, cheeks and chin.
PelagicX
The pelagic is a type of bird whose habitat is on the open ocean rather than in a coastal region or on inland bodies of water (lakes, rivers). An example of a pelagic bird is the blacklegged kittiwake.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X