Average lifespan: 18 years
When to seeMarch to August
AboutA small auk, the puffin is familiar as the 'clown' of the coast with its brightly coloured bill, bumpy landings and waddling walk. Puffins live in burrows in the short grass at the top of cliffs. They feed on fish, such as sandeels, which they catch by diving beneath the surface and using their wings to swim.
For most of the year, puffins are out at sea, returning to land to breed. During the breeding season, displays of bill-knocking and ritualised walking will result in mating pairs producing one egg, which is laid at the end of the burrow. The chick remains in the burrow until it is independent and ready to go to sea.
How to identifyThe puffin is black above, with a white belly and cheeks, a large, multicoloured bill, and orange, webbed feet.
DistributionNests on cliffs and islands at scattered locations around the coast of Scotland, northern England, South West England and Wales.
Did you know?The puffin is also known as the 'Sea Parrot' due to its brightly coloured bill, which is part of its breeding plumage. The bill is serrated to hold fish in place; one puffin was recorded as having 83 small sandeels in its bill at once!
How people can help
Thousands of birds, insects and other animals across England are finding it harder and harder to survive. Can you help create a Wilder Future for them?
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