Collared Petrel (Pterodroma brevipes)

Collared Petrel

[order] PROCELLARIIFORMES | [family] Procellariidae | [latin] Pterodroma brevipes | [authority] Peale, 1848 | [UK] Collared Petrel | [FR] Petrel a collier | [DE] Brustband-Sturmvogel | [ES] Petrel Acollarado | [NL] Kerguelenstormvogel


Genus Species subspecies Region Range
Pterodroma brevipes PO sw


Genus Pterodroma, Pseudobulweria and Aphrodroma are also knwon as the Gadfly Petrels. They vary in size from rather small birds such as the Cookilaria-species, measuring about 26 cm, to the much larger and robust representatives of this group like the White-headed Petrel with an overall length of about 43 cm. Their plumages also vary a great deal from species to species; from completely black to light grey mantles and pure white bellies, and with different color phases within species. One feature shared by all of them is the black bill of which the shape also shows much variation. Some species are extremely rare and restricted to a very limited area, other are abundant and wander widely or have unknown pelagic ranges.
The group of the Gadfly Petrels counts over 35 species, mainly from the Southern Hemisphere. There are three genera: Pterodroma with about 30 species, Pseudobulweria counting four and Aphrodroma with only one. Many authors have tried to classify the large number of species of this group and to determine their relationships. This has resulted in a division in several subgenera and the grouping of several species which are considered to have a more or less close relationship. The taxonomic discussion has not come to an end yet: new species have been added or split recently and probably will be in the near future.

Physical charateristics

Small and variable black-capped gadfly petrel of the Cookilaria group. Forehead white merging into dark brownish-grey cap and sides of cheeks, upperparts grey. Underparts highly variable: pale morphs almost all white, intermediate morphs have dark collar across the chect, dark morphs have dark grey underparts except whitish chin and throat

wingspan min.: 70 cm wingspan max.: 71 cm
size min.: 29 cm size max.: 30 cm
incubation min.: 0 days incubation max.: 0 days
fledging min.: 0 days fledging max.: 0 days
broods: 0   eggs min.: 0  
      eggs max.: 0  


Pacific Ocean : Southwest. Pterodroma brevipes is presently known to breed only in Fiji on Gau, and Pacific Oceanssibly Viti Levu, Kadavu, Ovalau and Vanuabalavu. On Gau island, 165 birds were attracted to lights on four nights in April-May 1984. However, in recent surveys for this species at two historical breeding sites: Ovalau (July 2004) and Mt Washington (=Nabukulevu) on Kadavu (August 2004), none were seen.


Breeds on forested slopes on remote ocean islands. During non-breeding season probably largely pelagic. Doesn’t, however, seem to leave the vicinity of the breeding islands.


It nests on Gau, Fiji, between 100 and 500 m, in burrows on steep, well-forested slopes. Young have been found in the nest on Fiji from May to August, although on Vanuatu small downy young were found in February

Feeding habits

Its diet is little known, but is thought to consist chiefly of cephalopods and fish


This species qualifies as Near Threatened as it is assumed to have a small and declining population, occurring in very small and isolated subpopulations. With further information on the identity of possible populations outside Fiji, and clarification of whether breeding populations remain on islands other than Gau, the species may warrant uplisting to Vulnerable.
Collared Petrel status Near Threatened


Perhaps relatively sedentary, tending to remain close to the breeding islands, although some are recorded to have dispersed east between about 10oN and 15oS almost to the Galapagos

Distribution map

Collared Petrel distribution range map

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