Skip to main content


Procellariidae (fulmars, prions, petrels, shearwaters; class Aves, order Procellariiformes) A family of medium to large, white, grey, brown, or black seabirds which have long, pointed wings and short tails. Their bills are short and heavy to long and slender, and have tubular nostrils, united on the top. Their legs are short to medium, their feet webbed. They are migratory, pelagic, and gregarious, and feed from the sea surface on fish, crustaceans, and fish offal. The 16 or 17 species of shearwaters (Puffinus) breed on islands in most oceans and many migrate between the southern and northern oceans. Prions (three–six species of Pachyptila) are oceanic and feed on zooplankton. Members of the family nest in burrows and rock crevices on cliffs and islands. Fulmars (Fulmarus) often follow ships. Daption capense (Cape petrel or Cape pigeon) nests on the ground in the Antarctic and ranges throughout the southern oceans. Pterodroma petrels (about 25 species) breed on the ground or in burrows on islands in the southern oceans. There are 12 genera in the family, comprising about 60 species, found in all oceans.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Procellariidae." A Dictionary of Zoology. . 20 Feb. 2019 <>.

"Procellariidae." A Dictionary of Zoology. . (February 20, 2019).

"Procellariidae." A Dictionary of Zoology. . Retrieved February 20, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.