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New Zealand Storm-petrel

Fregetta maoriana


This endemic New Zealand bird is one of the world’s smallest seabirds, weighing just 35g, despite belonging to the same order as the largest; the wandering albatross.

The species was thought to be extinct, but in 2003 an individual was spotted off the coast of the North Island and sightings have been recorded every summer since. However, the species was only ever seen at sea and the location of its breeding grounds eluded researchers for years. Finally, in early 2013, following the removal of rats and cats and the subsequent benefit seen in the New Zealand Storm-petrel, the breeding sites were discovered by researchers on Little Barrier Island. This important breakthrough will enable conservationists to learn more about this little-known species and develop comprehensive plans to safeguard the future of the species.

  • Order: Procellariiformes
  • Family: Oceanitidae
  • Population: > 50
  • Trend: decreasing
  • Size: 17cm
  • Weight: 35g

EDGE Score

EDGE Score: 5.70 (?)
ED Score: 17.76 (?)
GE / IUCN Red List (?)
Not Evaluated Data Deficient Least Concern Near Threatened Vulnerable Endangered Critically Endangered Extinct in the Wild Extinct


Hauraki Gulf Marine Park off the North Island of New Zealand. It is thought to be migratory due to its absence from the marine park form June to November, although where it spends the winter seasons is as yet unknown.

Habitat and Ecology

This species is mainly pelagic, spending the majority of its life on the open sea. The recently-discovered breeding ground was found in a forested area on an offshore island. Little is known about the species preferred wintering habitat or its ecology, but it is thought to behave in a similar manner to other storm-petrels. It most likely feeds on crustaceans and plankton, but is also attracted by chum slicks, made up of fish scraps and oil.

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Conservation Actions

For each key category of conservation action, we calculated a conservation attention score based on expert information. In this graph, a higher score means the action is being carried out more intensively over more of the species range. The colour shows how important each action is considered to be for the conservation of this species.

Engaging stakeholders
Addressing threats
Status of knowledge
Management plan
Capacity building
Behaviour change
Awareness raising
  Score: 100 means the activity occurs at high level across more than 75% of the species range
Very Low

Overall Conservation Attention

We combined all of the expert information on conservation actions to calculate an overall conservation attention score for this species. Please help us to reach our goal of establishing dedicated conservation attention at “High” levels for all EDGE species.

Very Low Low Medium High

More information

Recent studies have grouped all possible conservation activities for any species into nine key categories (Washington et. al 2015). For each action, we asked experts for each species to assess the extent to which that action is being carried out and how much of the species’ range that action occurs in. For each action we used these two pieces of information to calculate the conservation attention score per action. A score of 100 means that the action is being carried out to a high level across at least 75% of the species range. We then combined the scores for all actions into an overall conservation attention score for the species. The experts also judged how important each category was to the conservation of that particular species.