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Smithsonian Scientists Confirm New Species of Seabird Discovered in the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands

Bryan's shearwater (Puffinus bryani)

For the first time in decades, researchers have found a new bird species in the United States. Based on a specimen collected in 1963 on Midway Atoll, Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, biologists have described a new species of seabird, Bryan's shearwater (Puffinus bryani), according to differences in measurements and physical appearance compared to other species of shearwaters. Scientists at the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute analyzed the specimen's DNA to confirm that it is an entirely new species.

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Photograph courtesy of Reginald David, Smithsonian Institution.

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