[order] PROCELLARIIFORMES | [family] Hydrobatidae | [latin] Fregetta tropica | [authority] Gould, 1844 | [UK] Black-bellied Storm-petrel | [FR] Oceanite a ventre noir | [DE] Schwarzbauch-Sturmschwalbe | [ES] Paino Ventrinegro | [NL] Zwartbuikstormvogeltje
Storm-petrels are rather small and often dark colored tubenoses with a world wide distribution. All have fine black bills with very pronounced tubes. Storm Petrels are separated in two groups: the long legged, Southern Hemisphere birds subfamily Oceanitinae and the shorter legged species of more northern seas the subfamily Hydrobatinae. The first groups shows more morphological differences than the second. The genera are characterised on colour patterns, the condition of the nasal tubes, tail shape, structure of claws and proportions of the leg bones. The genus Fregetta have their plumage black above, white below and white upper tail coverts; nasal tube free at end and upturned, half culmen in length; tarsus booted in front, webs black, basal joint middle toe flattened, claws blunt and flattened.
Large blackish storm-petrel with white rump (uppertail coverts) and white belly. Separated from similar White-bellied Storm-petrel by black stripe along the center of the white belly patch, darker upperparts, dark vent and more obvious pale carpal bar. Often accompanies ships, preferring to run alongside or even follow the bow wave. Legs trail behined it, seems to bounce breast first into waves, sometimes patters with feet.
Listen to the sound of Black-bellied Storm-petrel
Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto
Southern Ocean : widespread. The Black-bellied Storm-petrel has a circumpolar distribution from islands of the Scotia Archipelago, through the southern Indian Ocean to the Antipodes Islands (New Zealand).
This species rarely associates with land, except when breeding. Its breeding season begins in November, forming loose colonies.
Its breeding season begins in November, forming loose colonies on bare rocky slopes, in thick vegetation or peat of offshore islands or stacks. It lays one egg in burrows or rocky crevices. Clutch size is 1 egg, incubated for 5-6 weeks. The chick fledges after about 9 to 11 weeks.
The diet of the Black-bellied Storm-petrel cosnists of fish and crustaceans. Cephalopods represents only a small part in the diet. During chick feeding the food is regurgitated.
Video Black-bellied Storm-petrel
copyright: John Gregory
This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is very large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
The Black-bellied Storm-petrel has a circumpolar distribution from islands of the Scotia Archipelago, through the southern Indian Ocean to the Antipodes Islands (New Zealand).
Outside the breeding season it migrations north into the subtropical and tropical zones of the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific Oceans, regularly occurring north up to the equator