from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun Any of various small auks of the genera Brachyramphus and Synthliboramphus of the Pacific Ocean, having black, gray, or brown upperparts and predominantly white underparts.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A small bird of the auk family, Alcidæ, related to the murres.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Zoöl.) One of several species of sea birds of the genera Synthliboramphus and Brachyramphus, inhabiting the North Pacific. They are closely related to the murres.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun Any of several species of small seabirds, in the genera Brachyramphus and Synthliboramphus of the auk family, found in the North Pacific.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


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  • The endangered marbles murrelet, that was only discovered in 1974, that can fly at speeds in excess of 85 miles per hour and lives at sea for up to 9 months, coming ashore only to breed on moss draped branches in the ancient redwood forests.

    Dr. Reese Halter: Saving the Remaining Old Growth Redwood Forests 2010

  • Birds of concern include the brown pelican, lesser tern, osprey, black rail, clapper rail, marbled murrelet, spotted owl and bank swallow.

    Central California Coast (Bailey) 2009

  • Species of concern include marbled murrelet and northern spotted owl.

    Northern California Coast (Bailey) 2009

  • Spotted owl and marbled murrelet depend on remaining old-growth forests.

    Cascade Mixed Forest - Coniferous Forest - Alpine Meadow Province (Bailey) 2009

  • The last-minute Bush timber giveaway promises over 500 million board feet of lumber per year to the timber industry at the expense of salmon spawning streams, healthy old-growth forests, and habitat for rare birds such as the northern spotted owl and marbled murrelet...

    Oregon's objections ignored in logging plans 2009

  • Species of concern include marbled murrelet and northern spotted owl.

    California Coastal Steppe, Mixed Forest, and Redwood Forest Province (Bailey) 2009

  • Other numerous species include the yellowbilled diver Gavia adamsii, whooper swan Cygnus cygnus, lesser whitefronted goose Anser erythropus, slatybacked gull Larus Schistisagus, Kamchatka tern Sterna camtschatica, guillemot Uria aalge, thickbilled guillemot Uria lomvia, pigeon guillemot Cepphus columbs, ancient murrelet Synthliboramphus antiquus, horned puffin Fratercula Corniculata and tufted puffin Lunda cirrhata.

    Volcanoes of Kamchatka, Russian Federation 2008

  • Other species include marbled murrelet Brachyramphus marmoratus, trumpeter swan Cygnus buccinator, and golden eagle Aquila chrysaetos.

    Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve, United States 2008

  • Nationally threatened birds (as listed by the United States Department of the Interior and State of California) include brown pelican Pelecanus occidentalis, bald eagle Haliaeetus leucocephalus, peregrine falcon Falcon peregrinus marbled murrelet Brachyramphus marmoratus, northern spotted owl Strix occidentalis, andpossibly western snowy plover Charadrius alexandrius.

    Redwood National Park, United States 2008

  • Redwood forests harbored a diversity of animal life including bears (Ursus spp.), fishers (Martes pennanti), pine martens (Martes americana), numerous warblers, and the endangered marbled murrelet (Brachyramphus marmoratus) which nests in mature forest canopies.

    Northern California coastal forests 2008


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  • "'...I appeal to you: is not that bird on the edge of the whaler's front platform--top--foretop--an ancient murrelet?'

    "'Why,' said Jack, considering it, 'I am no expert, as you are aware. But perhaps it does look a little elderly. Can it be ate?'"

    --O'Brian, The Truelove, 141

    March 11, 2008

  • Haha! Bird joke.

    March 11, 2008

  • I read that as 'predominantly white underpants' and, well, ...

    September 3, 2021