Sunday, July 13, 2014

Feeding Cormorants

I’m fascinated by all there is to learn about the various Cormorants.  For two days in a row I have visited Yaquina Head Outstanding Natural Area, it’s free with my Senior Pass, to photograph the birds on the rock islands.  It’s more difficult to get a good photograph than you might imagine.  The bright white background from all the bird poop, makes getting the details of a totally black bird to show almost impossible.  The magic of Photo Shop helps some. This feeding scene from yesterday at a Brant’s Cormorant nest is interesting for a couple of reasons.  Notice the young are getting fed by inserting their beaks deep into the parent’s throat (you will need to click on the photo to enlarge), the opposite of what we are used to seeing in most other birds where the parent drops the food into a waiting open chick’s mouth. The other interesting thing is the other mid-sized bird. My best guess is that it is actually a different species of cormorant, a Pelagic Cormorant which are smaller in size, and is just looking for a hand out. Sort of like the neighbor kid that stops by in hopes of getting a cookie.   

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