auk


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auk

(ôk), common name for a member of the family Alcidae (alcid family), swimming and diving birds of the N Atlantic and Pacific, which includes the guillemots and puffins. Their legs are set far back on their bodies, making them clumsy on land, where they seldom venture except to nest. The extinct, flightless great auk, Pinguinus impennis, or garefowl, represents the largest species. It was about the size of a goose, black above and grayish white below, and was formerly abundant in the N Atlantic. Slaughtered in its breeding grounds for its flesh, feathers, and oil, it became extinct c.1844. The least auklet (about 6 1-2 in./16.3 cm), common in the Bering Sea region, is the smallest of the family, and the razor-billed auk, Alca torda (16–18 in./40–45 cm), is the largest surviving member. The Eskimos hunt the dovekie (Plautus alle), or little auk, for food and use its feathered skin for clothing. Auks return to the same breeding grounds every year, and each individual goes to the very same nesting site. The single egg is laid on bare rock on cliff ledges, and incubation duties are shared by both parents. Auks are classified in the phylum ChordataChordata
, phylum of animals having a notochord, or dorsal stiffening rod, as the chief internal skeletal support at some stage of their development. Most chordates are vertebrates (animals with backbones), but the phylum also includes some small marine invertebrate animals.
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, subphylum Vertebrata, class Aves, order Charadriiformes, family Alcidae.

auk

[ȯk]
(vertebrate zoology)
Any of several large, short-necked diving birds (Alca) of the family Alcidae found along North Atlantic coasts.

auk

1. any of various diving birds of the family Alcidae of northern oceans having a heavy body, short tail, narrow wings, and a black-and-white plumage: order Charadriiformes
2. little auk a small short-billed auk, Plautus alle, abundant in Arctic regions
References in periodicals archive ?
With the [ocean] current change, the distribution of the water masses is going to change, so the food availability for the little auks would change," she says.
The English name penguin comes from the Gaelic words penn gwyn, which means "white cap," referring to the white patch that the adults of the great auk (Pinguinus [=Alca] impennis) had in front of their eyes in the breeding season.
The Auk North contract covers the fabrication and installation of a production pipeline, the installation of an umbilical(*), a power cable and subsea equipment.
This results in an initial margin on the AUK facility of 1.
EMC also said AUK had improved storage utilisation 400%,
rusticolus), and snowy owl (Nyctea scandiaca), may also prey on the little auk to a lesser extent and have a local effect in some colonies (Evans, 1981; Roby et al.
The exhibition explains why the Great Auk became extinct - and howit inspired the fledgling conservation movement in Victorian times.
In 2003 Nicolson and a friend took the Auk, a 42-foot wooden ketch, from Land's End in England up the west coast of Ireland, through the Hebrides to the Faeroes, a 1,500-mile trip through storm and stillness.
Mr Howlett added that razorbills and other members of the auk family such as guillemots and puffins, have specially designed rings as a result of the extra wear resulting from their physical shape.
Declines of this magnitude haven't been seen since the extinctions of the great auk and the passenger pigeon," said Dr Martin Gilbert of the Peregrine Fund, which assembled the international team that discovered the cause.
Low: The death of Auk Eye who collapsed after winning a chase at Wolverhampton
The plea to save the world's wildlife is a mixture of laughs and pathos with Sandra Madgwick as the hilarious dancing flea, Joe Cipolla as the Southern Cape Zebra and Rachel Peppin as The Great Auk.