Little Auk Alle alle   [Linnaeus, 1758]

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Order: Charadriiformes Family: Alcidae
BTO Codes: LK, LITAU EURING No: 6470
Number in Britain: Unavailable
Conservation Status:
European: Not a species of concern
Global: (Details)
Status in UK: (A)  Passage/Winter Visitor
Subspecies: alle (W) recorded in Britain (of 2 subsp. in the world)
Length: 18 cm Wingspan: 44 cm Weight: M/F: 170 g    
Scientific name from: Swedish: alle=seabird (local to Oland)
World Distribution: BREEDS: Greenland, Iceland, n Russia, n North America, WINTERS: at sea in n Atlantic
Habitat: Coastal cliffs, otherwise pelagic
Diet: Mostly planktonic crustaceans
TitBit: These starling-sized seabirds breed in huge colonies in the Arctic, but small numbers find their way each winter to Britain; they are particularly vulnerable to adverse weather with 'wrecks' of hundreds of birds occurring in coastal areas with a few individuals even turning up inland.  
Identification Tips:
  Images from IBC or search flickr
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Crossley ID photos

Other Names

Gaelic: Colcach-bheag Welsh: Carfil Bach
Danish: Sųkonge Dutch: Kleine alk
Finnish: Jääkyyhky French: Mergule nain
German: Krabbentaucher Hungarian: Alkabukó
Icelandic: Haftyršill Irish: Falcóg Bheag
Italian: Gazza marina minore Norwegian: Alkekonge
Polish: Alczyk Portuguese: Torda-anć
Spanish: Mérgulo marino Swedish: Alkekung
Local Names: Dovekie

For More Information...

Books and Monographs:
   Gaston, A. 1998 The auks Oxford University Press, Oxford [598.618 GAS]
   Nettleship, D. & Birkhead, T.R. 1985 The atlantic Alcidae Academic Press, London [598.618 NET]
See Also:
Find scientific papers on Google Scholar or Scirus by clicking the icon
Wikipedia entry
HBW account (subscription required)
BirdLife species page
Recent sightings and information from BirdGuides
All About Birds (from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology)