Markham's Storm-Petrel Oceanodroma markhami

Fernando Medrano, Jacob Drucker, and Alvaro Jaramillo
Version: 2.0 — Published October 29, 2020


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Habitat in Breeding Range

Breeding habitat are holes and crevices in saltpeter deposits in the middle of the Sechura and Atacama deserts, up to 25 km from the coast (13, 11, 14). Exact locations are provided in Distribution. These crevices vary in size and depth. Colonies are not necessarily in flat areas, with some saltpeter deposits occurring on small hills. The temperatures in the desert where these species breed could frequently surpass 40°C during the day, but inside the cavity the temperatures are more stable, usually between 27.8-30.2°C (16).

Habitat in Nonbreeding Range

Offshore, Markham's Storm-Petrel favors the cool, inshore waters of the Humboldt Current, and less so the Costa Rica and Southern Equatorial Currents. Density increases with salinity, and decreases with sea-surface temperature, wind speed above 25 km/hr, and distance from mainland (15). While they can occur across a range of water temperatures, the mean water temperature they occur in is 21.1°C (± 1.4). Birds prefer water with a salinity of 32-33.5 ppt salinity (15).

Recommended Citation

Medrano, F., J. Drucker, and A. Jaramillo (2020). Markham's Storm-Petrel (Oceanodroma markhami), version 2.0. In Birds of the World (T. S. Schulenberg, S. M. Billerman, and B. K. Keeney, Editors). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/bow.maspet.02