281. Puffinus persicus

281. Puffinus persicus.


Male 12" to 14". Legs white. Bill pale lavender. White line round eye. Above blackish brown. Below pure white. Axillaries dark brown. Tail rounded. Lateral lower tail-coverts deep brown. Remiges thirty. Arabian Sea and Persian Gulf. (B. 1539. S.F., i. 5.)

Also P. obscurus. 12". The Dusky Shearwater. Legs black. Bill hazel. Similar to P. persicus, but axillaries are white, or slightly mottled near tips. Tropical and subtropical seas.

P. assimilis. 10 1/2". Inner webs of primaries edged white. Australia and New Zealand seas, and northwards in Atlantic to Madeira. P. elegans. 11&''- S. Atlantic.

P. gavia. 12". Legs dusky. Bill dark horn colour. Under tail-coverts pure white. Axillaries sooty. New Zealand and Australian seas.

P. opisthomelas. 12". Primaries wholly dark beneath. Under tail-coverts sooty black. Flanks and axillaries dusky. California.

P. auricularis. 12 1/2". Similar to P. opisthomelas, but flanks and axillaries white. Coast of Mexico.

P. anglorum. 15". The Manx Shearwater. Above slaty black. Below white. Lower breast grey. Axillaries white, subterminally black, N. Atlantic Ocean, south to coast of Brazil. One egg (2.4 x 1.7), white.

P. yelkouanus. 15". The Levantine Shearwater. Similar to P. anglorum, but axillaries, lower flanks, and under tail-coverts mostly pale sooty. Mediterranean Sea, straying northwards to Devonshire and Cornwall, where it is known as " Kitty Carew," from its call.

P. gravis. 19". The Great Shearwater. Legs yellow. Bill horny. Back and upper tail-coverts conspicuously edged dusky. Sides of neck distinctly defined. Middle of abdomen and under tail-coverts sooty. It "shears the water" as it alights and dives. In flight it keeps its wings bent, and glides along without much flapping, rolling from side to side, and just skimming the waves. Hind toe replaced by a sort of spur. Atlantic Ocean from Greenland to Cape of Good Hope and Falkland Islands.

P. kuhli. 20". Legs yellow. Bill yellow, tip dusky. Sides of neck mottled. Flanks and mid-abdomen white. Mediterranean Sea and Atlantic.

P. creatopus. 20". Legs yellow. Bill yellow, tip dusky. Sides of head mottled. Above, including upper tail-coverts, dark grey-brown. From California to coast of Chili.

Plumage generally sooty.

P. carneipes. 19 1/2". Legs flesh colour. Bill flesh, tip dusky. Under wing-coverts sooty. Australia and New Zealand seas, northwards to Japan,

P. griseus. 18''. The Sooty Shearwater. Legs hazel. Bill dusky. Above sooty, edged paler. Below brown. Under wing-coverts, ashy with dark shafts. Formerly taken to be the young of the Great Shearwater. From Faroe Islands to Straits of Magellan in Atlantic, and Kurile Islands to Auckland Islands in the Pacific.

P. tenuirostris. 13". Legs yellow. Bill dusky. Above sooty brown. Under wing-coverts pale grey. Australia and New Zealand seas, northwards to Japan and Alaska and eastwards to Samoa.

P. nativitatis. 14". Similar to P. tenuirostris. Legs and feet black. Below dark brown. Central N. Pacific Ocean.

Nostrils united in a single opening directed forwards.

Also the genus Priofinus. With nasal tube comparatively short. One species— P. cinereus 19", legs flesh brown, bill yellow, nares and culmen black, above ashy with dark shafts, below white, sides of head and neck pale grey, Southern Oceans.

Also the genus Thalassaeca. With nasal tube comparatively long. One species— T. antarctica, 17", legs yellow, bill blackish, above brown, upper tail-coverts white, tail white, tipped brown, throat pale brown, below white, Antarctic Seas.

Also the genus Priocella. With tail of fourteen feathers. One species— P. glacialoides, 18", legs flesh colour, bill yellow, nares, culmen and tip black, above pale grey, a dark spot in front of the eye, forehead, cheeks, and below white, tail pale grey, South Seas.

Also with tarsus not compressed. Tail moderate, rounded.

The genus Majaqueus. With nasal tube almost united into a single opening directed forwards. Claw of hind toe small. Two species— M. eguinoctialis, 20", the Black Shearwater, legs black, bill yellowish, above sooty with pale edgings, chin and shafts of primaries white, South Seas, north to about lat. 30° S. ; M. parkinsoni, 18", similar to M. equinoctialis, but chin sooty black, New Zealand seas.

Also the genus Oestrelata. Dove-like Fulmars. With nasal opening directed slightly upwards. Claw of hind toe small. Thirty species of " Swimming Petrels " :—

OE. macroptera. 16 1/2". Legs and bill black. Entire plumage sooty brown. Southern Oceans.

OE. sterrima. 14". Legs dark red. Similar to OE. macroptera. Mascarene Islands.

OE. lessoni. 18". Legs yellow. Bill black. Above grey. Whole head, except round the eye, white. Southern Indian Ocean, Australian and New Zealand seas.

OE. hesitata. 16". The Capped Petrel. Above sooty. Crown and in front and below eye black. Back of neck, upper tail-coverts, and below white. W. Indies.

OE. jamaicensis. 14". Legs and bill black. Back of neck and whole plumage sooty brown. Jamaica.

OE. rostrata. 14". Legs yellow. Bill black. Above, under surface of wings and tail-feathers blackish brown. Below and under tail-coverts white. Central Pacific Ocean. OE. parvirostris. 15". Similar to OE. rostrata.

OE. incerta. 17 1/2" Legs yellow. Bill black. Above brown, edged paler. Sides of neck and breast pale brown. Mid-throat nearly white. S. Atlantic, near Cape of Good Hope.

OE. mollis. 14". Legs and bill black. Above grey. A black patch in front of and beneath the eye. Forehead, throat, and neck in front more or less white. - Sides of breast grey. South Seas, northwards in the Atlantic to Madeira,

OE. magentae. From the S. Pacific.

OE. phaeopygia. 17". Legs yellow. Bill black. Above brownish black. Under wing-coverts white. Tail black. From the Galapagos to the Hawaiian Archipelago.

OE. brevipes. 11 1/2". The White-throated Petrel. Legs yellow. Bill black. Back, wing-coverts, and upper tail-coverts grey. Tail greyish black, laterals pale grey. W. Pacific, New Hebrides, and Fiji Islands, to the southern ice barrier, lat. 68° S., and straying to the English coast.

OE. hypoleuca. 13". Similar to OE. brevipes, but larger under wing-coverts, mostly dark. N. Pacific Ocean.

OE. nigripennis. 12 1/2", Above slaty grey, with dark patch on rump. Feathers of head and neck narrowly edged white. Superciliary white spot. Kermadec Islands.

OE. brevirostris. 14 1/2". Legs dusky. Bill black. Bill much compressed. Nearly uniform slate-grey. S. Atlantic and S. Indian Oceans.

OE. solandri. 18". Legs and bill black. Head dark brown. Plumage greyish sooty. Concealed bases of feathers of under surface white. Australia.

OE. externa. 16". Legs yellow. Bill black. Above grey-black, edged paler. Bases of all feathers white. Back of neck white. Tail grey-black. Coast of Chili.

OE. cervicalis. 19". Similar to OE. externa, but margins of wing beneath are dark. Kermadec Islands.

OE. neglecta. 151". The Norfolk Island Shearwater. Legs yellow. Bill black. Above-brown, edged paler. Cheeks mottled brown. Under surface white. Sides of neck and breast pale brown. S. Pacific Ocean.

OE. arminjoniana. 16". Legs yellow. Bill black. Above brown, below white. Chin. sides of neck, and breast mottled grey-brown. Mid-throat white. Trinidad.

OE. trinitatis. Similar to OE. arminijoniana; but under surface sooty.

OE. heraldica. 14". Legs yellow. Bill black. Above dark brown, edged grey. Forehead and cheeks white, mottled brown. Lateral under tail-coverts vermiculated with grey. Western Pacific.

OE. gularis* Similar to OE. heraldica, but abdomen is slaty grey and larger under wing-coverts white. Antarctic Ocean.

OE. fisheri. Crown white, spotted grey. Back grey. Tail mostly white, irregularly barred and vermiculated with grey. A black spot beneath eye. Under feathers smoky, but pure white beneath surface.

OE. scalaris. 10". Above dark grey, tipped ashy white. Chin, throat, chest, centre of breast, and under tail-coverts pure white, rest of lower parts irregularly barred grey.

OE. leucoptera. 12". Legs yellow. Bill black. Above slaty black, below white. Forehead and sides of neck spotted slaty. Axillaries white. East coast of Australia.

OE. defillippiana. Similar to OE. leucoptera, but upper surface much greyer, the wings and a patch on the rump alone being black. Coast of Chili.

OE. cooki. Similar to OE. leucoptera, but much more grey. New Zealand seas.

OE. longirostris. 9 3/4". Like OE. brevipes, but bill much longer, and tail less graduated.. Japanese coast.

OE. axillaris. 12". Similar to OE. cooki, but purer grey, without dark patch on rump.. Axillaries black. Chatham Islands.

Also the genus Pagodroma. With nasal tube high. Claw of hind toe large. One species— P. nivea, 14" to 16". The Snowy Petrel. Legs yellow. Bill black. Pure white, Antarctic Seas.

Also the genus Bulweria. With long cuneate tail. Nasal tubes fleshy at the end, openings separate, and directed forwards and upwards. Two species— B. bulweri, 11", Bulwer's Petrel, legs yellow, bill black. Sooty brown, wing-coverts and chin paler and greyer, Temperate N. Atlantic and Temperate N. Pacific; B. macgillivrayi, 11 1/2", similar to B. bulweri, but colour uniformly sooty, Fiji Islands. (B.M. Cat., xxv. 368-421.)

Game, Shore And Water Birds Of India
Le Messurier, Augustus. Game, Shore, and Water Birds of India Fourth Edition, 1904.
Title in Book: 
281. Puffinus persicus
Book Author: 
A Le Messurier
Page No: 
Common name: 
Persian Shearwater
Persian Shearwater
Puffinus persicus
4th ed.
Term name: 

Add new comment

This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Enter the characters shown in the image.
Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith