The puffins are stocky, short-winged and short-tailed birds, with black upper parts and white or brownish-grey underparts.The head has a black cap, the face is mainly white, and the feet are orange-red.
North Atlantic: coasts of northern Europe south to northern France, the British Isles, the Faroe Islands, Iceland, Greenland, Norway and Atlantic Canada then south to Maine.
Winters south to Morocco and New York Puffins breed in colonies on coasts and islands; several current or former island breeding sites are referred to as Puffin Island.
The Atlantic puffin burrow is usually lined with material such as grass, leaves and feathers but is occasionally unlined.
The eggs of the Atlantic puffin are typically creamy white but the odd egg is tinged lilac.
Like many auks, puffins eat both fish and zooplankton, but feed their chicks primarily with small marine fish several times a day.
The prey species of the Atlantic puffin include the sandeel, herring and capelin.
Their short wings are adapted for swimming with a flying technique under water.
In the air, they beat their wings rapidly (up to 400 times per minute) The English name "puffin" – puffed in the sense of swollen – was originally applied to the fatty, salted meat of young birds of the unrelated Manx shearwater (Puffinus puffinus), formerly known as the "Manks puffin".
The male Atlantic puffin builds the nest and exhibits strong nest-site fidelity.