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Brunnich's Guillemot gliding down from cliff to sea, Spitzbergen | by Tim Melling
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Brunnich's Guillemot gliding down from cliff to sea, Spitzbergen

A hundred thousand pairs of Brunnich's Guillemots (Uria lomvia) breed on the cliffs at Alkefjellet in Spitzbergen. Birds frequently launch themselves off their nesting ledges and glide down to the sea with wings outstretched and legs splayed. I focussed on one bird and caught another in the background doing the same. Like all auks, they spend a lot of time loafing on the sea near to their breeding cliffs, but they have to fly a long way north to catch their favourite food, Polar Cod, which abound at the edge of the pack ice.

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Taken on July 22, 2013