Swinhoe’s Storm Petrel

Scientific Name: Hydrobates monorhis

Malay Name: Lelayang-Laut Kelam Asia

Chinese Name: 黑叉尾海燕

Range: Breeds on the offshore islands of temperate Northeast Pacific from eastern China to Korea and Japan, passaging through the South China Sea to the Indian Ocean to winter.

Taxonomy: Monotypic.

Size: 20 cm

Identification: Small size, forked tail and overall sooty brown plumage with contrasting paler diagonal bar across upperwing-coverts.

Habitat: Open seas.

Behaviour/Ecology: Usually observed in small groups during migration, flying and gliding just above the water surface.

Local Status: Common migrant

Conservation Status: Near Threatened (BirdLife International 2018)

Location: Straits of Singapore.

Migrant bar chart (see more bar charts):

Swinhoe's Storm Petrel Hydrobates monorhis
Estimated average number of individuals by week based on eBird data, Jul 2013 to Jun 2023
Peak week Sep 17-Sep 23
Early date 28 Aug 2021
Late date 27 Jun 2021
Significant numbers pass through the Singapore Strait every September, as well as a smaller passage in May.


BirdLife International. (2018). Hydrobates monorhis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2018. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2018-2.RLTS.T22698520A132651372.en. Accessed on 1 January 2023

Jeyarajasingam, A., & Pearson, A. (2012). A Field Guide to the Birds of Peninsular Malaysia and Singapore. Oxford University Press.

Robson, C. (2014). Field guide to the birds of South-East Asia (Second Edition). Bloomsbury Publishing, London.

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