FWS Focus


Black-capped petrels are pelagic seabirds that only nest on the island of Hispaniola in the Caribbean. Known as one of the gadfly petrels because of their speedy, weaving flight, black-capped petrels are widely distributed and travel long distances to foraging areas in the western Atlantic and southern Caribbean basins and the central and northeastern Gulf of Mexico. Recent satellite tracking studies have also documented their use of near-shore areas off the northern coast of Central and South America. Officially known as the black-capped petrel in current ornithological literature, it is also known by several distinct common names throughout its range, like “diablotin” (French and Spanish-speaking range states), “chathuant” (Haiti), and “bruja” or “chanwan” (Cuba). 

Scientific Name

Pterodroma hasitata
Common Name
Black-capped Petrel
FWS Category

Location in Taxonomic Tree

Identification Numbers



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