Cormorants (Phalacrocoracidae)
Cormorants are medium to large water birds which are mainly black in colour. They have long necks and tails, and fully webbed feet. They swim and dive from the surface with great expertise. In flight the neck is extended, giving a somewhat goose-like impression. They often spend long periods perched with their wings spread to dry in the sun or the wind. They breed colonially on cliffs or in trees.
There are thirty-two species worldwide, of which three breed in Europe.
Species seen but not photographed:
  • Pied Shag: New Zealand (November 2001)
  • Little Shag: New Zealand (November 2001)
  • Pygmy Cormorant: Bulgaria (June 2014)