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Wilson's Storm-Petrel Oceanites oceanicus

  • Order: Procellariiformes
  • Family: Oceanitidae
  • Polytypic: 3 subspecies
  • Authors: Jacob Drucker

Wilson’s Storm-Petrel is commonly regarded as one of the most abundant seabirds, if not one of the most abundant birds in the world, with a population reaching several million pairs. It is also the most cosmopolitan of any member of the order Procellariiformes and, though breeding in the Southern Oceans, can be found in all oceans of the world, from the coast of Antarctica to the Arctic waters of the Atlantic Ocean, and furthers ranges into large intercontinental waters such as the Persian Gulf, the Red Sea and the Gulf of Mexico. Indeed, the only large portion of oceanic water where it is absent is the north Pacific Ocean. Being such a habitat generalist (relative to other pelagic seabirds), Wilson’s Storm-Petrel also is a food generalist, feeding on a wide variety of planktonic crustaceans. In pursuit of its food, Wilson's Storm-Petrel forages mainly on the wing, in typical storm-petrel fashion, gently dipping its feet into the water to attract or disturb food items that are close to the surface.

© Paul Coopmans

  • Year-round
  • Migration
  • Breeding
  • Non-Breeding

Recommended Citation

Drucker, J. (2013). Wilson's Storm-Petrel (Oceanites oceanicus), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.