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the web of life in southern Africa

Bulweria bulwerii (Bulwer's petrel) 

Bleekvlerkkeilstert [Afrikaans]; Bulwerse stormvoël [Afrikaans]; Bulwer-stormvogel [Dutch]; Pétrel de Bulwer [French]; Bulwersturmvogel [German]; Alma-negra [Portuguese]

Life > Eukaryotes > Opisthokonta > Metazoa (animals) > Bilateria > Deuterostomia > Chordata > Craniata > Vertebrata (vertebrates)  > Gnathostomata (jawed vertebrates) > Teleostomi (teleost fish) > Osteichthyes (bony fish) > Class: Sarcopterygii (lobe-finned fish) > Stegocephalia (terrestrial vertebrates) > Tetrapoda (four-legged vertebrates) > Reptiliomorpha > Amniota > Reptilia (reptiles) > Romeriida > Diapsida > Archosauromorpha > Archosauria > Dinosauria (dinosaurs) > Saurischia > Theropoda (bipedal predatory dinosaurs) > Coelurosauria > Maniraptora > Aves (birds) > Order: Ciconiiformes > Family: Procellariidae

Bulweria bulwerii (Bulwer's petrel)  

Bulwer's petrel, Taiwan. [photo Awei Lee ©]


Distribution and habitat

Breeds on islands in the north-eastern Atlantic Ocean, tropical Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean, dispersing across tropical and subtropical waters in the non-breeding season. It is a rare vagrant to southern Africa, recorded in February 1986 off Luderitz, Namibia and in summer 1977 off Cape Columbine, Western Cape.


It mainly eats small fish, squid and crustaceans, doing most of its foraging by grabbing prey from the surface of the water, occasionally plunge-diving to a depth of 2.4 metres.


Not threatened, although it has been negatively affected by introduced predators at some of its breeding colonies.


  • Hockey PAR, Dean WRJ and Ryan PG 2005. Roberts - Birds of southern Africa, VIIth ed. The Trustees of the John Voelcker Bird Book Fund, Cape Town.