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Puffins (Fratercula arctica) are any of three small species of alcids in the bird genus Fratercula with a brightly coloured beak during the breeding season. The puffin's distinctive bill has given it the nicknames of 'sea parrot' and 'bottle nose'. The puffins’ genus name, Fratercula,comes from the Latin for “little brother.” which refers to the sea bird’s black and white plumage, which was said to resemble the robes that monks once wore. Although it looks a bit like a penguin or a parrot, it is actually related to the auk family - its close, larger relatives being razorbills and guillemots. Puffins are pelagic seabirds that feed primarily by diving in the water. Their comical appearance is heightened by their red and black eye-markings and bright orange legs. They have a black back and white underparts, and a distinctive black head with large pale cheeks and a tall, flattened, brightly-coloured bill. Puffins swallow their food underwater, but they can carry up to 30 small fish at once when bringing food home to their young – they are one of the few birds that have the ability to hold several small fish in their bills at a time. During the winter, puffins live out on the ocean, not returning to land until the next breeding season. Puffins only possess Technicolor bills—and their matching orange feet—during the spring breeding season. Just before winter sets in, they shed the colourful outer bill, leaving a noticeably smaller and duller-coloured beak.
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