Fulmar

From Academic Kids

Fulmar
Image:Fulmar0433.jpg
Northern Fulmar
Scientific classification
Kingdom:Animalia
Phylum:Chordata
Class:Aves
Order:Procellariiformes
Family:Procellariidae
Genus:Fulmarus
Species

F. glacialis (Linnaeus, 1761)
F. glacialodes (A. Smith, 1840)

The two Fulmars are closely related seabirds occupying the same niche in different oceans. The Northern Fulmar (Fulmarus glacialis), or just Fulmar lives the north Atlantic and north Pacific, whereas the Southern Fulmar (F. glacialoides) is, as its name implies, a bird of the southern oceans. These birds look superficially like gulls, but are unrelated, and are in fact petrels.

Missing image
Fulmarus_glacialis_1_2.jpg
Northern Fulmar, breeding on Bjrnya

Both species breed on cliffs, laying a single white egg. Unlike many small to medium birds in the Procellariiformes they are neither nocturnal breeders, nor do they use burrows. The chicks can eject an evil smelling oil up to 2 m, which repels unwanted visitors. It will matt the plumage of avian predators, and can lead to their death.

They are highly pelagic outside the breeding season, like most tubenoses, feeding on fish, oil or offal.

Like other petrels, their walking ability is limited, but they are strong fliers, with a stiff wing action quite unlike the gulls. They look bull-necked compared to gulls, and have short stubby bills.


The northern species is grey and white, 43-52 cm in length with a 101-117 cm wingspan. The southern form is a paler bird with dark wing tips, 45-50 cm long, with a 115-120 cm wingspan.

The range of these species increased greatly last century due to the availability of fish offal from commercial fleets, but may contract because of less food from this source and climatic change.

The Sibley-Ahlquist taxonomy gives a radically different scientific arrangement for this group based on DNA studies.

Missing image
Fulmarus_glacialis_1_8.jpg
Northern Fulmar, breeding on Bjrnya
Missing image
Fulmarus_glacialis_1_1.jpg
Northern Fulmar, in flight at Spitsbergen

See also

da:Mallemuk de:Eissturmvogel es:Fulmar nl:Noordse stormvogel no:Havhest pl:Petrel

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