Wedge-tailed Shearwater

Puffinus pacificus

Order

PROCELLARIIFORMES

Family

Petrels and Shearwaters (Procellariidae)

Code 4

WTSH

Code 6

PUFPAC

ITIS

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ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Least Concern

The Wedge-tailed Shearwater is the largest of tropical shearwaters. It may also be called the Muttonbird at times. Ranges for this species include tropical areas of the Pacific and Indian Oceans. Breeding habitats of this bird are found on islands off of Japan, the Islas Revillagigedo, the Hawaiian Islands, the Seychelles and Western Australia islands. Diets of the Wedge-tailed Shearwater typically consist of fish, squid and crustaceans. Their favorite food is goatfish, and prey is caught near the surface of the water or by diving underneath. The current conservation rating for the Wedge-tailed Shearwater is listed as Least Concern.

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PHOTO SHARING AND DISCUSSION

BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

SUMMARY

Overview

Wedge-tailed Shearwater Dark Morph: This large shearwater is dark brown overall with a black-tipped, dark gray bill. Tail is long and pointed in flight, extends past the pink legs and feet, and fans to wedge-shaped when banking turns or landing. Soars with slow flapping wing beats followed by upward glide. Diet typically includes fish and squid. Sexes are similar.


Range and Habitat

Wedge-tailed Shearwater: This species breeds widely on small islands in the tropical and subtropical waters of the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It occurs as a casual resident in the waters off of central and southern California. This species is pelagic and comes ashore only during its breeding season.

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SONGS AND CALLS

Voice Text

"ka-woooo-er"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • The Wedge-tailed Shearwater was first described in 1789 by Johan Friedrich Gmelin, a German naturalist.
  • An alternate common name is the Pacific Shearwater, and it is one of the species that is sometimes referred to as a Muttonbird.
  • They are monogamous, forming long term pair bonds that last for several years. Divorce between pairs occurs after breeding seasons that end in failure.
  • A group of shearwaters are collectively known as an "improbability" of shearwaters.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP

CERange Map for Wedge-tailed Shearwater

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Gary Owen Dick

Artist

Irina Rud-Volga

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BIRDS AND BIRDING

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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