Common Name: Flesh-footed Shearwater
Distribution: The species is a trans-equatorial migrant. It is widely distributed across the southern Indian and south-western Pacific Oceans during the breeding season, including Lord Howe Island. Individuals from western colonies migrate west to South Africa, north to the Arabian Sea, Maldives and Sri Lanka, whilst south-west Pacific Ocean individuals migrate to the North Pacific Ocean. In eastern Australia it is common in northern NSW/SE Queensland waters in summer, during autumn to spring it is an offshore passage migrant. Rare in Tasmania, Bass Strait and Victoria. Common from Bunbury, Western Australia to coastal South Australia during Nov-April.
Ecological Notes: Usually observed over continental shelves and slopes and occasionally inshore waters. Individuals are typically solitary at sea, although flocks of hundreds of birds can form around sources of food, and at dusk when individuals raft together offshore from their breeding islands. Most feeding is undertaken offshore over continental shelves where it feeds on fish and squid, mostly caught by pursuit-plunging. Birds have also been observed flying low over the ocean and pattering the water with their feet while picking food items from the surface.
Additional Notes: Incidental mortality arising from interactions with longline fishing operations is considered one of the main threats to flesh-footed shearwaters
References: Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment at http://www.environment.gov.au/cgi-bin/sprat/public/publicspecies.pl?taxo… Accessed 6 February 2022
eBird https://ebird.org/species/flfshe Accessed 13 August 2023