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Seabirds, from the Order Aves, live in that zone between air and water. Watch as Dr. Kathy Townsend explains more.

Sea birds are from the Class Aves – which means “birds”. There are over 10 000 species of Aves, however there are really only five orders contain ‘marine’ species. These include the Sphenisciformes (penguins), Procellariiformes (seabirds), Charadriformes (shorebirds), Pelicaniformes (pelicans) and the Suliformes (boobies). They can be found in all kinds of habitats, including marine, freshwater and terrestrial.

Characteristics of birds include: lungs which consist of four sets of air sacs, porous bones & a toothless bill to reduce weight and allow the birds to fly, amniotic eggs with calcium shells, four chambered heart, they are endothermic (warm blooded) and are covered with feathers.

Like the reptiles, the group as a whole is much better adapted for land and living in marine environments present challenges for birds. While they make short trips into the water, they have a strong connection to the land and air, allowing them to regulate their body temp, find a place to lay their eggs and raise their young.

How do you feel about birds? I know that some people love bird watching, while others are terrified by them. Let us know in the chat.

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Life Below Water: Conservation, Current Issues, Possible Solutions

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