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Grey Backed Petrel

 

Grey-backed storm petrel (Garrodia nereis)

Grey-backed Storm Petrel
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Another sparrow sized bird, weighing only 35 grams, yet quite at home flying in full force gales in New  Z'ealand's Sub-Antarctic waters. Distinctive fluttering flight close to the waves. Breeds on islands throughout the Sub-Antarctic. Nests in burrows. The most common storm petrel around the waters off the South Island, but generally seen well offshore, usually more than 25 miles, occasionally as close in as 12 miles.

The most likely species of storm petrel to be seen off the Kaikoura Coast, although only a rare visitor. Most likely to be seen off Kaikoura over the winter months, but could be seen at any time of year.