This week’s photo, taken June 12, 2015 from the Edmonds Pier in Edmonds, WA, features a pair of RHINOCEROS AUKLETS.
The RHINOCEROS AUKLET is a common seabird seen year-round in the Puget Sound region. They always fly low, skimming the surface of the water. (Hmm, I wonder if they have a fear of heights). They certainly do not have a fear of speed, because they always fly fast, beating their wings rapidly. They often fly in flocks, usually in single file formation. I’ve observed a string of 40+ ‘Rhinos’ zipping past the pier. They also fly under water, using their wings to propel them below the surface while they hunt for fish. During breeding season, the adult sports two white plumes on each side of its face, and it also sprouts a ‘horn’ on its bill, hence the name ‘Rhinoceros.’ A very cool bird, indeed.
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