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5 Photos That Prove Seabirds and Shorebirds Make Amazing Moms

You will have no ‘r-egrets’ after learning more about these marine birds

Screen Shot 2020-01-21 at 6.00.45 PM
Public Domain

From the Atlantic to Pacific, a diverse set of seabird and shorebird species speckle our ocean’s coasts. From protecting their babies before they hatch to ensuring their hatchlings grow into healthy, thriving individuals, the level of commitment that seabird mothers show to their offspring is remarkable. Take a look at these spectacular photos of five marine bird species, and get ready to be inspired by these marvelous moms of sea and air!

Black-browed Albatross

(Thalassarche melanophris)

Albatros  sourcils noirs et son petit
© photo2nature/Fotolia

This albatross chick has a wide-open sky to explore one day.

For now, though, Mama knows it’s best to stay safe in their nest.

American Oystercatcher

(Haematopus palliatus)

American Oystercatcher Doris Rafaeli Nickerson Beach NY
© Doris Rafaeli

This American oystercatcher mother has recently done exactly what gave it its namesake: oyster catching!

While its little one has much to learn about oyster retrieval, mom is here to save the day in the meantime.

Blue-footed Booby

(Sula nebouxii)

Galapagos Blue Footed Booby Joan Glatman
© Joan Glatman

This blue-footed booby might feel like it’s ready to take on the world, but mom says not quite yet.

The chick will be off on its own in no time, and mom’s in no rush to say goodbye quite yet.

King Penguin

(Aptenodytes patagonicus)

King Penguin Marian Herz
© Marian Herz

No matter the weather, this king penguin mother will always provide for her chick until it learns to thrive on its own.

Least Tern

(Sternula antillarum)

Screen Shot 2020-01-21 at 5.08.01 PM
© USFWS

While this least tern hatchling may have big dreams about the world it will see one day, it also knows the best place to be right now is under its mother’s wing. Okay … maybe it’s not so sure, but this mother is determined to make sure her chick grows to be the healthiest little flyer around.


While all of these species are equally inspiring mothers, they also all face a multitude of modern-day threats. From marine debris to climate change and beyond, there are threats facing the birds of our blue planet’s coasts that they can’t face alone. They are all worth protecting, and we are the ones who can help make sure their future is one of a clean and healthy ocean. Add your name to our email list to stay updated on all the latest ways to help take action and support Ocean Conservancy’s conservation initiatives—together, we can work to keep these precious creatures safe today and in the years to come.

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