Species profile

Name: guillemot is the common name for several species of seabird in the Alcidae or auk family. The name guillemot is typically used to refer to the common guillemot (Uria aalge) – also known as the common mure or thin-billed mure.

Appearance: guillemots have black heads, backs, and wings with white chests. Some have a bright white ring around their eyes.

Size: they are usually around 38 to 46 cm long with a wingspan of around 61 to 73 cm and a weight of 0.7 to 1.3 kg.

Diet: they feed on schooling fish such as cod, capelin, sand lances, sprats, and herring although they also eat molluscs, worms, and squid.

Did you know: guillemots are fast flyers – reaching speeds of 80 km per hour – but they aren’t very agile unless they’re under the water. Around 20 days after hatching chicks leave their nests and head for the sea. They are able to dive as soon as they hit the water. They can stay underwater for a couple of minutes and have been recorded diving to depths of up to 180 metres!

Location: they are found across the North Atlantic and North Pacific oceans, spending most of their time at sea and only coming to land to breed on rocky cliffs.

where to see Guillemots

According to reports submitted to WildSide, you can see guillemots in the following places:

Place Chance to see User rating No. reports
South Stack
very good

Photo credit: ramonin under a Creative Commons license from Pixabay

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