Let’s all go fishing!

cormorant flockToday’s photos are not perhaps my most striking work but they are of something that I don’t see everyday. There is a nesting colony of Little Black Cormorants on the island in the middle of the duck pond in Sydney’s Royal Botanic Garden. However, here in the suburbs of the Inner-West, I usually only see one cormorant at a time. On a recent walk around the bay I came across this flock of around 35 cormorants diving in the water.

When cormorants dive under the water they can stay under for a considerable amount of time and pop back up quite some distance from where they went down. This flock however brought to mind a diving lesson. Rather than diving deep, these birds were making quick shallow dives and popping back up again almost as soon as they went under.

cormorant flock4

According to Birdlife Australia, the Little Black Cormorant regularly forms large flocks of even hundreds or possibly thousands, which sometimes feed co-operatively. “They have been recorded surrounding schools of fish in open water, and forming a line across marine inlets to catch fish washed out on ebbing tides. Flocks advance across the water’s surface, with birds flying ahead from the rear, alighting and diving in front of the feeding flock.” While this flock was much smaller than that, it is not something I’ve seen before and was fun to watch.

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