Double-Crested Cormorant

The Double-crested Cormorant (Phalacrocorax auritus) is a large waterbird found throughout North America. This species measures around 70 cm (27.6 in) in length, with a wingspan of approximately 120 cm (47.2 in). The adult bird weighs between 1.2 and 2.5 kg (2.6 to 5.5 lbs), with males generally larger than females.

Double-crested Cormorant

One of the most distinguishing features of the Double-crested Cormorant is the presence of two tufts of feathers on the head that resemble “double crests.” These tufts are only present during breeding season, making it easier to identify the species during this time. The bird’s plumage is primarily black, with a bronze-green sheen on the back and wings. Juvenile Double-crested Cormorants are brown overall, with a paler throat.

The Double-crested Cormorant is a migratory bird, with populations found throughout much of North America in the summer months, and in more coastal areas during the winter. In the United States, these birds are known to breed as far north as Alaska and as far south as Mexico. During the winter months, the birds are found along the Atlantic, Gulf, and Pacific coasts of North America, as well as in parts of the Caribbean.

Double-crested Cormorants are skilled swimmers and divers, using their webbed feet and powerful wings to propel themselves through the water in search of fish, which make up the majority of their diet. The birds are able to dive to depths of up to 25 meters (82 feet) and can remain underwater for up to a minute. Due to their fishing habits, Double-crested Cormorants have been known to compete with human fishers, leading to some controversy and management efforts in certain areas.

Overall, the Double-crested Cormorant is a remarkable bird with impressive diving abilities and unique features that make it easy to identify. Whether you spot one during its breeding season or during its winter migration, the Double-crested Cormorant is a fascinating species to observe in the wild.

Double-crested Cormorants

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