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Atlantic Puffins | New England By the Numbers

Yankee Plus Dec 2015


Atlantic Puffins | New England By the Numbers
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Atlantic Puffins Atlantic Puffins

pair of puffins nesting in the U.S. in 1901 (on Matinicus Rock, Maine)

pairs (approx.) of puffins now nesting on Maine islands 40 years after the launch of Project Puffin

record number of fish carried all at once in a puffin’s beak (average haul is a mere 10 fish)

ounces: average weight of an Atlantic puffin, the smallest of the four known species of puffins, at just 10 inches tall

puffin egg laid per year, tended to by both parents over its 6-week incubation

year Stephen Kress founded Project Puffin (, introducing chicks from Newfoundland to Maine’s former island breeding grounds, hoping they’d return to nest as adults

miles traveled by one puffin tracked by Audubon over the 8 months it spent away from its Maine nesting site

cost to “adopt” a puffin through the Audubon Society, thereby supporting seabird restoration efforts worldwide
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years: average age at which puffins begin breeding, having returned to their colonies first at age 2 or 3 after rambling about the open ocean

age of the oldest known Atlantic puffin

Debbie Despres


Debbie Despres


Debbie Despres is an associate editor for the magazine. Deb is the primary fact checker for Yankee Magazine and also contributes content to each issue. A member of YPI’s corporate staff since 2000, Deb joined Yankee’s editorial team in 2011. A native of New Hampshire, with a work history that includes several years in the travel industry, she enjoys discovering new destinations, and the myriad of road trip opportunities unique to New England.

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