Great picture and the title, Ian. Coal indeed:)
You captured wonderful detail in his feathers Ian and what a lovely sky! :D
Greetings from Canada,
Zooming in, I can look him right in the eye! Excellent catch. Marilyn
Thankyou Inessa, Pam and Marilyn. You are all like family - I wake up in the morning and there are your greetings (or good nights, I guess). He/she wasn't so hard to catch, just a simple bird out of our reach, and so not at all concerned about the bigger creatures wandering along the jetty. I loved the burnt look.
It is a stunning blue eye. I think he just blinked.
He's obviously a member of the cormorant family, but not one I'm familiar with.
If I ever do get to visit Australia, I can see me taking LOTS of bird pictures - what a wonderful variety you have!
Greetings from northern California,
I am sorry that I didn't give the specific name in the title, for I thought the title was better than any scientific name.
This fellow (he/she) is a Little Black Cormorant (Phalacrocorax sulcirostris). Our common name for cormorant here is shag. And I had some very descriptive names for him: ebony shag, boot-polished shag, charcoal bird, little shag and others.
I am not an authority, far from it, but my bird field guide tells me we have
Ph. varius (pied shag);
Ph. carbo (black shag);
Ph. melanoleucos (B&W shag); and
Ph. fuscescens (B&W shag).
But the one that we loved best as kids was the Darter or Diver bird (Anhinga melanogaster)! And I guess he isn't a shag at all, but we regarded him as the best of the shags in our creek!
When you come, Paul, there will be many photo opportunites awaiting. I understand that there are about 750 species in North America, and about 720 in Australia plus the imported species. That is a fair population for a rather separated continent, and the greatest proportion are unique to Australia.
Regards from across the bigpond,
Thanks Ian. I like the title of this one very much - it really fits the picture, and I'm glad that you knew the specific type of cormorant you had photographed.
We don't see Anhinga here in northern California, but I did get to see one sunning itself with wings spread on the southern Pacific coast of Costa Rica a couple of years ago.
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Photo taken in LOT 39 Charlton Esplanade, Urangan QLD 4655, Australia
Misplaced? Suggest new location