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Tuatara: Volume 21, Issues 1 and 2 (New Zealand Albatrosses and Petrels: an Identification Guide)

31. Hutton's Shearwater — (Puffinus huttoni) — Plate 13

31. Hutton's Shearwater
(Puffinus huttoni)
Plate 13

Field Characters: 90/35. A medium to small-sized shearwater, difficult to distinguish from the Fluttering Shearwater (30) at sea. Uppersurface uniformly blackish-brown. Underbody mostly white except for the dusky sides of neck, which often merge to form a broad greyish collar. A conspicuous dark brown thigh patch is also present. Underwing although showing some white is mostly grey, the dark flush extending from the axillary region to well past the carpal joint. page 42 Juvenile birds similar to adults, but with more white on throat and underwing.

The long and very slender bill is dark greyish brown. Feet pale with dark outer edges.

Differs from Fluttering Shearwater (30) by sooty brown upperparts remaining consistently dark throughout the year, and by more dusky underwing and throat. Differs from Little Shearwater (32) by its larger size, dark brown (not black) uppersurface and dusky underwing and throat.

Flight and feeding behaviour very similar to Fluttering Shearwater (30).

Summer breeder at high altitudes (1300 metres plus) on seaward Kaikouras.