Alone at Sea with my Storm Petrels

Without a doubt Storm Petrels are the little darlings of the high seas. At not much more than six inches long they are the smallest seabird which I encounter. Storm petrels appear ever so dainty and fragile as they dart and dance while they disappear and reappear between the wave tops.

Storm Petrels roam the open oceans, always exposed to the elements; I think it totally amazing that such a tiny, beautiful, delicate looking exquisite little bird excels so well to a life exposed to the harsh conditions out on the open ocean. There are no places far out to sea off the coast here where these birds can take shelter when the weather is severe; in fact I have never, ever, even seen one rest on the water, they appear to be always nonstop flying, day and night always on the move and incredibly never resting.

In gales and rain when I’m at home in my warm bed these delicate little birds are somehow handling violent windy, cold conditions in a raging sea. I have observed them in strong winds; they are in complete control, just a little tip one way or another and off they go in another direction for a second or two then another tip to again changed direction at a rate almost faster than the eye can follow.

When they are around my boat I think of them as the dancing Black and White Minstrels. Splashing and dancing while disappearing and reappearing between the wave tops. At times they use their wonderful jet black long slender legs and colourful orange/yellow web feet to bounce up and down off the sea as if on a pogo stick. Storm Petrels are always a joy to have around.

Even though I take great pleasure enjoying their captivatingly beautiful dancing show, I know it is not performed for me, but to disturb plankton and other tasty small marine creatures which Storm Petrels wish to feed on. Some of these plankton sized creatures  will leap out of the water like fleas when disturbed in this way.

Richard Freeman.

Framed Prints of Storm Petrels



Alone at Sea with Humpback Whales.

Alone at sea with Sharks.

Alone at Sea with my Dolphins.

The Wreck of the ‘’SS Dickey”.

Alone at Sea with my Gannets.

Alone at Sea with my Fairy Prions.

Alone at Sea with my Albatross.

Alone at Sea with Jellies and Stingers.

Alone at Sea with my Giant Petrels.

Alone at Sea with my Storm Petrels.

Alone at Sea with my Terns.

Alone at Sea with Jaegers and Skuas.

Alone at Sea with the Shearwaters.

My 5.6 metre Shark Cat.

Weather at Sea.