The Atlantic Puffin (Fratercula arctica, Macareux moine, ATPU) is a seabird species in the auk family. Also know as “common puffin”, “clown of the ocean”, “clown of the sea” and “sea parrot”, these squat little pelagic birds look comically awkward on land and rather heavy in the air, but once in their element, the water, they become able predators. “Flying” through the sea on stubby wings, they dive-bomb shoals of herring, sand eels, sardines, and other small fish and sometimes squid. These pursuit divers collect their victims one at a time, but can hold as many as 20 small fish crosswise in their brightly coloured beaks at the same time. The Atlantic Puffin is 26–29 centimetres (10–11 in) in length (bill 3-4 cm), with a 47–63 centimetres (19–25 in) wingspan. The male is generally slightly larger than the female, but they are coloured alike. A puffin can fly 48 to 55 mph (77 to 88 km/hr). The puffin beats its wings rapidly to achieve this speed reaching up to 400 beats a minute. This species breeds on the coasts of northern Europe, the Faroe Islands, Iceland and eastern North America (Canada and New England), from well within the Arctic Circle to northern France and Maine. It is the only Puffin species found in the Atlantic Ocean. The winter months are spent at sea far from land - in Europe as far south as the Mediterranean, and in North America to North Carolina. Puffins often nest in well populated colonies usually on remote, rugged islands free from egg and chick eating land predators. They deposit a single egg deep within a burrow excavated in soft earth, or in a feather, or grass, lined lair in a rocky cleft. After fattening-up their hatchlings on fish, the parents return to the sea. The young Puffins, still unable to fly, eventually scramble to the shore by night and plunge into the water.