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Band-rumped Storm-Petrel Oceanodroma castro


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Band-rumped Storm-Petrel
credit: Grallaria/CCSA

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Family: Hydrobatidae, Storm-Petrels view all from this family

Description ALL ADULTS Have mostly very dark blackish brown plumage except for white rump; upper wings have faint pale carpal bar.

Dimensions Length: 7.5 - 9" (19-23 cm); Wngspn: 16 1/2-18" (42-45 cm)

Habitat Breeds on Azores and other islands in east Atlantic and common in offshore waters in west Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico, May-Sep.

Observation Tips Usually easy to see on deep sea pelagic trips in summer. Most records occur far beyond the sight of land.

Range Mid-Atlantic, Florida, Southeast

Voice Silent at sea; purring calls uttered at nest by breeding birds.

Discussion Small seabird with mostly all-dark plumage and a relatively narrow, bandlike white rump. Flight is reminiscent of a shearwater, with glides interspersed with burst of rapid wingbeats. Told from similar-sized Wilson's by shorter legs (feet do not project beyond tail in flight), much less distinct pale bar on upper wing coverts, and different flight pattern. Told from Leach's by tail shape (only slightly notched in Band-rumped but deeply forked in Leach's), narrow white rump (elongated and divided centrally by dusky bar in Leach's), and different flight patterns. Sexes are similar.