A dwarf Atlantic Puffin fledgling Fratercula arctica from Nólsoy, Faeroe Islands
Keywords:biometrics, body size, rare bird
An unusually small Atlantic Puffin fledging Fratercula arctica was found on Nólsoy, Faeroe Islands, in August 1997. The bird was fully feathered with no down remnants and left the colony during the peak of the fledging period. Some of its measurements (those where feather length is crucial, such as wing and tail) fell within the range of minimal values found in young puffins fledging prematurely. Others, like bill and tarsus lengths with a prevailing skeletal component, were less than the lowest known values. Very small body size seems to account for the very low body mass of the bird. However, proportionally developed pectoral muscles as well as the bird's overall good appearance (fully feathered with no down) and behaviour indicated that it apparently was not food stressed or starving.
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