Latin name: Fregetta tropica

Population: The Black-bellied Storm petrel has a large global population estimated to be 200,000-300,000 individuals.

Cites classified: Least Concern (IUCN, 2008)

Where found: The Black-bellied Storm petrel is found in Antarctica, Argentina, Australia, Bouvet Island, Brazil, Chile, Falkland Islands, French Polynesia, French Southern Territories, Madagascar, Mozambique, New Zealand, Oman, Peru, Saint Helena, Sao Tomé and Principe, Solomon Islands, South Africa, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, Uruguay, and Vanuatu.

Wingspan: 45-46 cm

Length: 20 cm

Weight: 43-63 g

Mating/Breeding: The Black-bellied Storm petrel nests in slight and usually unlined depression in stable screes, among broken rocks and in burrows. Breeding time for the Black-bellied Storm petrel is between December and February. The Black-bellied Storm petrel lays one egg, incubated for 35 to 44 days. The chicks fledge at 65 to 71 days.

Eggs: White, spotted at the broad end.

Hunting Habits: The Black-bellied Storm petrel takes his food by dipping and pattering and surface-seizing.

Feed on: Surface plankton, small fish and pelagic crustaceans.

Threats: On some islands the introduced cats and rats take a severe toll. Late snowfalls may block nesting cavities and lead to chick starvation.

Colour/Looks: The Black-bellied Storm petrel has a typical dark back and white rump but the white extends to most of its belly and breast, with a thick black line bisecting the belly.

More info:

  • Hadoram Shirihai, A complete guide to Antarctic wildlife (2002)
  • David McGonigal & Lynn Woodworth, Antarctica and the Arctic. The complete encyclopedia (2001)