Great Shearwater

Ardenna gravis

Order

PROCELLARIIFORMES

Family

Petrels and Shearwaters (Procellariidae)

Code 4

GRSH

Code 6

PUFGRA

ITIS

Egg Color:

White



Number of Eggs:

1



Incubation Days:

55



Egg Incubator:

Both sexes



Nest Location:

On ground.



Nest Material:

No material added to nest.



Migration:

Migratory



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General

Great Shearwater: Large shearwater with scaled, gray-brown upperparts, white underparts, and brown markings on belly. Dark cap contrasts with white face. Tail is dark above with conspicuous white rump band and gray below. Sexes are similar.

Range and Habitat

Great Shearwater: This species breeds on the islands of Tristan de Cunha in the southern Atlantic Ocean. They are migratory, and spend May to early November as a nonbreeding visitor to the north Atlantic and may occur along the Atlantic Coast of North America from Florida to Canada. They may also wander into the Gulf of Mexico. They are pelagic, only coming ashore to breed.

Breeding and Nesting

Great Shearwater: One white egg is laid in a burrow on a grassy slope. Eggs are incubated for 55 days by both parents.

Foraging and Feeding

Great Shearwater: Feeds mainly on small fish and squid. Chases prey underwater by paddling its feet, with wings held partially opened.

Vocalization

Great Shearwater: Gives a low nasal, squealing call when resting on water.

Similar Species

Great Shearwater: Cory's Shearwater is slightly larger and has a yellow bill.

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UnderpartsX

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

UpperpartsX
Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
BellyX
The ventral part of the bird, or the area between the flanks on each side and the crissum and breast. Flight muscles are located between the belly and the breast.
CapX
The area on top of the head of the bird.
FaceX
The front part of the head consisting of the bill, eyes, cheeks and chin.
RumpX
The area between the uppertail coverts and the back of the bird.
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