Black Guillemot

: A Unique and Fascinating Bird

The Black Guillemot, also known as Cepphus grylle, is a striking bird that belongs to the Alcidae family. This seabird is notable for its distinctive black plumage with white wing patches and red feet. In this blog post, we will delve into the characteristics of this fascinating bird.

Basic Description

The Black Guillemot is a medium-sized bird measuring about 12-14 inches in length and weighing approximately 10.5 ounces. They have an unmistakable appearance with their sleek black feathers contrasting against their bright red legs and bills. The adults have piercing brown eyes surrounded by white eye-rings which make them look even more charming.

Where To Find This Bird

This species can be found along the coasts of northern regions such as North America, Greenland, Iceland, Europe, Russia’s Far East Coast to Japan’s Hokkaido Island. During winter migration periods they are occasionally spotted off shorelines of western Washington State (USA) or British Columbia region (Canada).


Black Guillemots prefer rocky marine habitats where they nest inside crevices on cliffs or rocks near coastal waters near offshore islands or small coves protected from strong winds or surf actions.


Black Guillemots feed mostly on fish which they catch by diving underwater up to depths of around 100 ft., using their wings like flippers but also swim with powerful strokes propelled mainly by foot motions since tail shape helps improve maneuverability while swimming over short distances.

Cool Facts

1) These birds can stay underwater for up to one minute while searching for food.
2) During breeding season these birds engage in elaborate courtship rituals including bill fencing displays between potential mates.
3) Parental care involves both parents incubating eggs and feeding chicks until fledging at about five weeks old.
4) Adult males lose their bright red feet temporarily when molting their feathers, and instead have dull greenish-grey legs until new red feather grow in the following breeding season.

In conclusion, the Black Guillemot is a remarkable bird that has captured the hearts of many bird enthusiasts. From its striking appearance to its unique habits, this seabird is truly fascinating. If you want to catch a glimpse of this amazing creature, head towards rocky shorelines along coastal areas or offshore islands where they nest and feed during different times of year depending on region.