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The parakeet auklet (Aethia psittacula) is a small seabird of the North Pacific. These auklets used to occupy their own in genus, but recent morphological and genetic evidence suggest that the birds are closely related to crested auklets and least auklets.
These small birds live in the boreal waters of Alaska, Kamchatka and Siberia. There, they breed on the cliffs, slopes and boulder fields of offshore islands. Generally, they move south during the winter.
The parakeet auklet is small (23 cm), with a short orange bill that is upturned. This gives the bird its curious, fixed expression. Meanwhile, the bird’s plumage is dark above and white below. It displays a single white plume projecting back from the eye. Finally, the is a small amount of variation between breeding and winter plumage.
The parakeet auklet is a highly vocal species at the nest, calling once it arrives at the nest and then duetting once its mate arrives. It makes a series of rhythmic hoarse calls and a quavering squeal. The function of these are unknown, but could be associated with defending its burrow from intruders and strengthening the bond with its mate.