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    Great Cormorant

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    Appearance

    Cormorants are pelican-like waterbirds with fully webbed feet and a throat pouch. Breeding birds have white on nape and neck and white thigh patch. Juveniles have more brown than adults with dirty-white underparts.

    Diet

    The diet of the Great Cormorant mainly consists of fish, crustaceans, and insects.

    Nesting Behaviour

    Nests are constructed within trees, shrubs and reeds, typically located in or near water and built at the height of 1 – 3 meters above the water level, or up to 7 meters above the water level. The nest is a platform constructed from sticks, twigs, and other plant material. The Great Cormorant is a colonial nester, occurring in sites with other species of cormorants, herons, spoonbills, and ibises.

    Distribution & Habitat

    They can be found in coastal waters worldwide, except around the islands of the central Pacific. They also frequent suitable inland waters, including rivers, lakes, reservoirs, and swamps. The most common species in North America is Double-crested cormorant.

    The Great Cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo) is the most cosmopolitan species, which is found in much of Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, and eastern North America. The bird swims low in the water and frequently perches with wings outstretched.

    Video Credits: My Birding Year
    Image Credits: Becky Matsubara

    References:

    1. Maurice Burton, Robert Burton – International Wildlife Encyclopedia
    2. Richard Porter, Simon Aspinall – Birds Of The Middle East
    3. Kerrylee Rogers, Timothy J. Ralph – Floodplain Wetland Biota In The Murray-Darling Basin

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