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Kidadl Team

AUGUST 30, 2021

Black Petrel: 21 Facts You Won't Believe!

Black petrel facts listed in this article are fascinating.

Black petrels are the smallest of the petrel birds and can be found in the Pacific Ocean region. They are also known as Parkinson's petrel. Parkinson's petrel breed in the Great barrier island and little barrier island (islands in New Zealand). They are completely black colored birds with black legs and feet also. Their beak is yellow colored with a black tip area. They breed between October and June and during their breeding season they assemble in colonies. They do their nesting in burrows and the female lays a single egg per breeding season. The egg goes through an incubation period of 57-58 days. Their population is under the threatened category and their number is slowly decreasing.

This was a small introduction of the species. Ahead in the article there are more interesting and funny facts about this bird.

For more relatable content, check out these belted kingfisher facts and common kingfisher facts for kids.

Black Petrel Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a black petrel?

Black petrel (Procellaria parkinsoni) is a type of bird found in the sea.

What class of animal does a black petrel belong to?

Black petrel belong to the class Aves, class Procellariiformes, family Procellariidae and genus Procellaria. The binomial nomenclature of this species is Procellaria parkinsoni.

How many black petrels are there in the world?

According to IUCN red list, these birds are considered a Vulnerable species. There are around 38000 individuals present in the eastern portion of Pacific Ocean. They had been endangered, and considered extinct because of habitat loss until they were rediscovered in the year 1963.

Where does a black petrel live?

Black petrels are small seabirds found across the tropical waters of the Pacific Ocean. During day time, they fly over the sea surface in search of food and in night fall back to their land habitat or sometimes stay at inlands nearby. So they can be found both on land and sea.

What is a black petrel's habitat?

Black petrel (Procellaria parkinsoni) are sea birds whose population is distributed across the Pacific Ocean. The breeding happens in the Great Barrier Island and Little Barrier Island around the North Islands in New Zealand. They inhabit the tropical and temperate regions in the Pacific Ocean and can be found in the area ranging from the east coast of Australia to the west coast of South America between Mexico and Peru. They can be also seen in Galapagos Island and the Hauraki Gulf.

Who do black petrels live with?

Black petrels are sea birds species in the family Procellariidae. These seabirds generally fly alone over the sea but can be seen in groups while eating.

How long does a black petrel live?

Black petrel birds fall under the conservation status of Vulnerable Species. They are known to have a moderate lifespan range but their exact lifespan is not yet known.

How do they reproduce?

Black petrels like most other sea birds are monogamous in nature. The bond between these birds may last for a year (minimum) or it may last for many years. Breeding season in these birds start from October and lasts up to June in the Hauraki Gulf. They are endemic breeders of the Great Barrier Island and Little Barrier Island in New Zealand. During their breeding season, all the breeding and non breeding birds return to their breeding areas and form pairs. These birds form strong bonds but still, if the female or male bird doesn't return, they find a new partner. After that, they fly, feed and roam together in pair and come back to their nesting area by the end of November. Individuals have their fixed nesting area and in their nest the female bird lays a single egg. They nest in burrows and reuse it every single year. The laid egg goes through an incubation period of around 57-58 days and then the young bird comes into existence. Both parents take turn and incubate the egg. Black petrels are birds who breed in colonies.

What is their conservation status?

According to IUCN red list, black petrel birds fall under the conservation status of Vulnerable Species.

Black Petrel Fun Facts

What do black petrels look like?

Black petrel birds are sea birds who breed in colonies. They have a dark plumage which seems very elegant on them. Black petrels are known to be the smallest among all the petrel species. Along with their overall dark body, they have dark colored legs and feet. They have a small tail and a medium-small bill which is curved downwards at the tip. The bill is basically yellow colored with a black tip. These marine birds have long thin wings with an average wingspan of 43 in (109.2 cm). Their body weigh is around 25 oz (700 g). The structure of their head is very similar to the albatross but have smaller beak.

Black petrels breed between October and June.

How cute are they?

They are very cute and beautiful. Their elegant plumage and slim wings make them very attractive.

How do they communicate?

Black petrel species communicate through their rough calls. They barely call in the sea. They make noise while they fall back and after they make it to the ground. During their breeding season, when they assembly, the breeding colonies make too much noise. Another sea bird that makes noise is the laughing gull.

How big is a black petrel?

Black petrels are medium sized petrel birds who are found in New Zealand and across the Pacific Ocean. They are known to be the smallest petrel birds in the family. They have an average wingspan of 43 in (109.2 cm) and average body weight of 25 oz (700 g).

How fast can a black petrel move?

Black petrels are fast flying birds and their population can be seen flying swiftly above the sea in the day time. However, their exact flight speed has never been never recorded.

How much does a black petrel weigh?

Black petrels are medium sized petrels who breed in the Great Barrier Island and Little Barrier Islands in New Zealand. They have an amazing wingspan of 43 in (110 cm) and average body weight of 25 oz (700 g).

What are the male and female names of the species?

There are no species names assigned to the male or female bird species. They are almost similar in size and plumage.

What would you call a baby black petrel?

Like all other baby birds, baby or young petrel birds are also known as chicks and young ones. They lay a single egg and that egg goes through an incubation period of 57-58 days and then the chick arises.

What do they eat?

Black petrels are marine birds that are carnivorous in nature. Their population survives on fish mainly. In the day time they fly over the sea surface in search of fish.

Are they dangerous?

Black petrel are sea birds who hunt and feed on small fishes and are endemic to the sea. They cause no harm to humans.

Would they make a good pet?

No. Black petrels are purely wild bird species who live in New Zealand islands and can be found open in the Pacific Ocean. They lead a free life and if tried to capture them, it may lead to their death. Moreover, they come under the conservation status of Vulnerable Species and capturing them might count as a legal offence.

Did you know...

Black petrels are expert divers. In search of fish, black petrel birds dive to a depth of around 65.6 ft (20 m).

Black petrel migration

During their breeding season, black petrel population visit the Great barrier island and Little barrier islands, Hauraki gulf and nearer places. And at the end of their breeding season, they migrate towards South America and can be found in there.

Comparisons with other petrels

Black petrels are considered the smallest petrel species. Not like other petrel species like the cape petrel, it has pure black plumage in the overall body. Their throat may sometimes have white feathers, making them look similar to the white chinned petrels but that very rare.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these grey-cheeked parakeet facts and stilt owl facts page.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable black petrel coloring pages.

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