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Tufted Puffin

Fratercula cirrhata

Did you know?

  • Tufted puffins swim quickly through schools of fish, scooping them for a meal.
  • Both the male and female incubate the eggs.
  • They mostly nest in grassy areas on slopes and cliffs.
  • A female lays one egg at a time.
  • Chicks leave the nest six to seven weeks after hatching.

Flashy Feathers

During breeding season, this puffin sports bright yellow tufts of feathers. These can help attract mates as they flash in the breeze. The bird's cheek feathers are bright white, and its body is black.

Super Swimmers

Like all puffins, tufteds are better at swimming than flying. They dart after fast-moving fish and snatch them up in their large beaks.

Threat Level

  • Unknown
  • Common
  • Near Threatened
  • Threatened
  • Endangered
  • Critically Endangered
  • Extinct in the Wild


The Tufted Puffin is widespread and abundant.


Northwest United States and Canada, to Russia, south to Japan


Open ocean, rocky shorelines

We care about tufted puffins

The Saint Louis Zoo participates in the Species Survival Plan for tufted puffins. This is a cooperative breeding program, with a number of zoos working together to ensure the survival of this species. We support them in Penguin & Puffin Coast at the Zoo. Learn more about how we are helping wildlife around the world.

Dedicated to Conservation

Find this animal in The Wild


The Wild

You’ll find penguins, puffins, grizzly bears, gorillas, chimpanzees, to name a few. And while visiting, you can take a ride on the Conservation Carousel or hop aboard and ride the Zooline Railroad. There are also gift shops and eateries you can enjoy.

Explore The Wild