Wednesday, May 24, 2006

The "Forgotten" Cormorant

Excepting the Pied Cormorant, which is a rarely seen species in Tasmania, the scarcest cormorant here is the Little Black. I suspect it's often overlooked, particularly when roosting with other cormorants. Most often seen in estuaries, although sometimes found on larger farm dams. Around the Hobart area, there are usually small groups to be found in the Derwent Marshes, roosting on the beached dead trees. Other sites include Blackman Bay (Dunalley area), where occasionally flocks reach around 70 birds. I'm sure they don't usually generate great excitement among birders, but perhaps you haven't seen them cooperatively feeding. I've witnessed this feeding method at close hand a few times, and their ability to "herd" fish and the subsequent feeding frenzy, makes for exciting viewing. Occasionally, Little Pied and Great Cormorant join in.
The images shown here, were
taken at Montrose Bay (on the Derwent River) recently, on the yacht club jetty. One of the shots gives a comparison of size with a Little Pied.

3 comments:

Felix Wilson said...

Hi Alan,

Nice shots of the cormorants.

Did you catch the Mercury this morning, it had a story about a Gento Penguin which appeared at Conningham over the weekend and was moved by Parks and Wildlife to another beach, which it left shortly after. Interesting, but a pity it wasn't publicised earlier, I imagine they wanted to protect it from over-eager photographers!

Story here:

http://www.themercury.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,5936,19239022%255E3462,00.html

BirdingTas said...

Hi Felix,Yes I did see the story--I don't think I quite qualify in the "over eager" stakes, and probably age will preclude me from ever making it!! Penguins as a group seem to have eluded me over the years. Like this one, I always seem to know about them after the event. I did manage a Fiordland, some years ago at Scamander.

John & Shirley Tongue said...

We tried for one (a Fiordland, I think) a couiple of years ago that had come ashore to moult down near Eaglehawk Neck. Saw lots of feathers, but the bird had moved on just a few days before....sigh!