little auk

little auk

noun
the dovekie, Alle alle.

Origin:
1875–80

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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Encyclopedia Britannica
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little auk

small, black and white seabird of the North Atlantic. The dovekie belongs to the family Alcidae (order Charadriiformes). It is about 20 centimetres (8 inches) long, with a short bill. Its legs and wings are short, and its feet are webbed. It is a proficient diver, feeding on fish, mollusks, and crustaceans. Dovekies breed on rocky coasts and islands of the Arctic Ocean, from Greenland to Novaya Zemlya, Russia. They nest in large colonies, each breeding pair laying a single egg in a rock cranny on a hillside, or, on peaty ground, in a burrow.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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