Atlantic Puffin

Atlantic Puffin

Fratercula arctica

Atlantic Puffin Atlantic Puffin Atlantic Puffin Atlantic Puffin Atlantic Puffin

Atlantic puffins have a distinctive large, triangular red-orange bill with a blue-gray base and yellow ridge. The top of a puffin’s head, neck, back and wings are black, while its cheeks are pale gray and underparts white. Puffins have bright orange legs and webbed feet. They are adept swimmers.

Did You Know?

Puffins are sometimes called the "parrots of the sea."


Atlantic puffins eat several types of fish as well as zooplankton (euphausiids, mysids and copepods). At the Aquarium, they are fed capelin and silversides.


Atlantic puffins are typically about 12 inches tall.


Atlantic puffins inhabit a geographic range from the coast of New England to Iceland and the British Isles. They spend most of their lives at sea but return to land to breed, with about 60 percent of the world’s population nesting in Iceland.

Population Status

Atlantic puffins are threatened by certain human activities and are rare in areas where they were once abundant.


The great black-backed gull is a natural predator of the Atlantic puffin. Introduced predators include foxes and rats.

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A Note From the Caretaker

Atlantic puffins are monogamous and return to the same nesting ground year after year.

pressroom striped fish

Jack Cover
General Curator

As the general curator, Jack's role is to ensure that our living animal collections are thriving and diverse, to best exhibit the beauty of the wild habitats we represent here at the Aquarium. Learn More