Bermuda Petrel

Pterodroma cahow

Order

PROCELLARIIFORMES

Family

Petrels and Shearwaters (Procellariidae)

Code 4

BEPE

Code 6

PTECAH

ITIS

ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Endangered

The Bermuda Petrel only breeds on a few islets off the coast of Bermuda, and ranges in waters near the island nation, including areas of the Gulf Stream off of North Carolina. Historically, this species was common on Bermuda but quickly declined after colonization and was believed to be extinct for three centuries until its rediscovery during the 20th century. From a total remnant population of just 18 pairs, conservation efforts have increased its numbers to 250 mature individuals. The species nearly went extinct because of introduced predators, and over-hunting, and is currently threatened by rats reaching its nesting grounds and rising sea levels. currently has an Endangered rating due to drastic declines in the population of this species, particularly during the 1990s. This species has an IUCN conservation rating of Endangered.

SUMMARY

Overview

Bermuda Petrel: Medium petrel, gray-brown upperparts shading to black on rump; white underparts except for dusky sides of upper breast. Base of tail has white band. White face, forehead. Black-brown cap goes to eyes. In flight shows black-gray upperwings, white underwings with black margins, tips.


Range and Habitat

Bermuda Petrel: Endemic to the island of Bermuda, Atlantic Ocean. It was widespread throughout the main island and its adjacent satellites but now is confined to four of the smallest islets in Castle Harbour, Bermuda . Nothing is known of its range at sea, it may wander to the offshore waters of the southern Atlantic states. May have been sighted off the coast of North Carolina.

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Bermuda Petrel SONGS AND CALLS

Similar Sounding


Voice Text

"ca-how"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • In 1951, 18 surviving nesting pairs were found on rocky islets in Castle Harbour, and a program was set up by David B. Wingate to build concrete burrows and wooden bafflers for the nesting tunnels in order to keep out the slightly larger, competing White-tailed Tropicbird. The main threat for the future is lack of suitable breeding habitat. The global population of this bird in 2005 was only about 250 individuals.
  • It is commonly known in Bermuda as the Cahow, a name derived from its eerie nocturnal cries. These cries stopped early Spanish seafarers from settling the Islands out of superstition, as they thought the Isles were inhabited by Devils. Instead they put ashore hogs as a living food store for passing ships, which was the beginning of the end for this species.
  • The Bermuda Petrel is the national bird of Bermuda, and a symbol of hope for nature conservation. It was thought extinct for 330 years.
  • A group of petrels are collectively known as a "gallon" and a "tank" of petrels.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP NORTH AMERICA

About this North America Map

This map shows how this species is distributed across North America.

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Artist

Yury Lisyak

HELP ME IDENTIFY A BIRD

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UnderpartsX

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

UpperpartsX
Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
BreastX
The upper front part of a bird.
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.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X