Talk About Wildlife

Have Questions?


Atlantic Puffin in Canada: Features, Facts and Much More

Atlantic Puffin in Canada

The Atlantic Puffin is a cute seabird with a black back and white belly. It has a large, colorful beak that looks like red, blue, and yellow stripes. They can fly, but they spend much time swimming and diving in the ocean to catch fish. Puffins gather at seaside cliffs and burrow holes during breeding season to lay their eggs. Puffins are known for their funny toddle when they walk on land.

The biggest puffin colonies in Canada are found on the islands. The population of Atlantic puffins in Canada faces threats from pollution, oil spills, climate change impacts and introduced predators like rats on their nesting islands.

Physical Characteristics and Features

Features of Atlantic Puffin-min

Some physical features of this cute-looking bird that can grab your attention and force you to capture them in your cameras:

Features Relevant Information
Scientific Name Fratercula Arctica
Life Span Average age is about 20 years but can go up to 40 years.
Diet Small fishes (capelin, herring, and hake), Squids and Marine Worms
Height Average is about 18 cm
Average Weight It is about 500 grams
Habitat Burrows on the rocks containing island and Sea Cliffs
Other Names Common Puffin
Status of specie Not Endangered

Interesting Facts About Atlantic Puffins in Canada

Facts About Atlantic Puffins

Some fascinating facts about these seabirds inhabiting the Pacific Ocean:

  • Distinctive Colorful Beak

    The Puffin’s beak is its most distinctive feature, with a catchy orange, blue, and black color during the breeding season.

  • Excellent Swimmer

    They are excellent swimmers and can dive up to 60 meters deep in search of small fishes.

  • Nesting on Coastal Cliffs

    These birds nest on steep coastal cliffs, digging burrows or using crevices in the rocks to lay their eggs.

  • Webbed Feet

    They have webbed feet, which aid in their swimming and diving abilities.

  • Flightless for a Short Period

    After the breeding season, puffins undergo a molting process during which they are temporarily flightless.

  • Excellent Flyers

    Despite their small size, puffins are excellent flyers, capable of traveling long distances over the ocean.

  • Parental Care

    Both parents take turns incubating the single egg and feeding the chick after it hatches.

  • Migratory Birds

    Atlantic Puffins are migratory birds, spending the breeding season on land and the non-breeding season at sea.

  • Fascinating Adaptations

    Puffins have several adaptations that help them thrive in their marine environment, such as waterproof feathers, the ability to drink salt water, and a specialized tongue for catching fish.

  • Distinctive Calls

    Puffins have distinctive calls that they use for communication within their colonies, including a loud, growling call and a soft, murmuring call.

  • Cultural Significance

    In some coastal communities in Canada, the Atlantic Puffin holds cultural significance and is celebrated through art, literature, and local traditions.

Sub-Species in Canada

Species of Atlantic Puffins-min

There are two sub-species of these seabirds in the Canadian population:

  •  Tufted Puffin: 

    This has a distinctive tuft of feathers on top of its head during the breeding season, resembling a pair of golden “horns.” It has a triangular red beak and a white facial mask.

  •  Horned Puffin 

    The horned puffin has a unique upward-curving “horn” extending from the upper eyelid during the breeding season. It has a reddish-orange beak and a black facial mask.

Sight Seeing of Atlantic Puffins

Sight Seeing of Atlantic Puffins-min

The best places to see these birds are the coasts around the islands and they can be photographed quite easily in these places:

Direction of the Country Places Where Atlantic Puffins are Found
Northwest Side Canadian Arctic
Eastern Side Labrador Sea, Newfoundland, Prince Edward Island, Quebec
Pro Tip

They are mostly seen on the islands in Newfoundland because this makes up the Pacific Ocean territory.

When to See Atlantic Puffins


The season that can be the ideal one to see these cute birds starts from late May to September at the breeding locations where they move frequently.

They make the Canadian atmosphere beautiful and colorful with their attractive colors allowing the tourists to be attracted to these places.


Share the Post:

Related Posts