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A History of the Birds of New Zealand.

Adamastor Cinereus. — (Brown Petrel.)

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Adamastor Cinereus.
(Brown Petrel.)

  • Cinereous Fulmar, Lath. Gen. Syn. ii. pt. 2, p. 405 (1785).

  • Procellaria cinerea, Gm. Syst. Nat. i. p. 563 (1788, ex Lath.).

  • Procellaria hæsitata, Forster, Descr. An. p. 208 (1844).

  • Procellaria hasitata, Gould, B. Austr. fol. pl. 47 (1848).

  • Priofinus cinereus, Bonap. C. R. xlii. p. 769 (1856).

  • Adamastor typus, Bonap. Consp. Av. ii. p. 187 (1857).

  • Puffinus cinereus, Lawr. B. of N. Am. p. 835 (1860).

  • Puffinus kuhlii, Cass. Proc. Phil. Acad. 1862, p. 327.

  • Procellaria adamastor, Schl. Mus. Pays-Bas, Procell. p. 25 (1863).

  • Procellaria cinerea, Buller, Birds of New Zealand, 1st ed. p. 305 (1873).

Native name.—Kuia.

Ad. suprâ cinerascenti-brunneus, dorsi plumis et supracaudalibus pallidiore brunneo terminatis; remgibus et rectricibus brunnescenti-nigris: facie et colli lateribus obscurè cinerascentibus brunneo variis: subtùs albus pectoris lateribus brunneo lavatis: rostro flavo, versus apicem nigricante: pedibus sordidè flavis; iride nigrâ.

Adult. Crown of the head, back of the neck, and all the upper surface greyish brown, the feathers of the back and the upper tail-coverts edged with paler brown; the face and sides of the neck dusky grey mottled with brown; throat, fore neck, and all the underparts pure white, stained on the sides of the breast with brown; quills and tail-feathers brownish black. Irides black; bill yellow, stained towards the tips with black; legs and feet dull yellow. Total length 20 inches; wing, from flexure, 13·25; tail 5·5; bill, following the curvature of upper mandible 2·5, from gape to extremity of lower mandible 2·5; tarsus 2; middle toe and claw 2·6.

Professor Hutton states that this species is “very common on the coast;” but I have never myself seen a specimen in New Zealand, nor do the local museums contain any. That it is extremely abundant, however, in certain latitudes may be inferred from the following notice of this Petrel in Darwin’s ‘Voyage of a Naturalist:’—“I do not think I ever saw so many birds of any one sort together as I once saw of these behind the island of Chiloe. Hundreds of thousands flew in an irregular line for several hours in one direction. When part of the flock settled on the water the surface was blackened, and a noise proceeded from them as of human beings talking in the distance.”

There are two specimens in Mr. Salvin’s collection received from Whitely as having been obtained in “New-Zealand seas.” These are male and female.

I met with a large flock of them, in the month of August, about 300 miles eastward of Australia. They appeared to be active on the wing and very restless.