Saturday, 13 December 2014

Pelagic Cormorant (Phalacrocorax pelagicus)

                             Winter plumage Pelagic Cormorant (subspecies P. p. pelagicusat Shiranuka, Japan - December 2014

Local Name (Japan): Hime-u (ヒメウ) "Princess Cormorant"
OTHER NAMES: Baird's Cormorant
Featured Subspecies: Phalacrocorax pelagicus pelagicus
Weight: 1.4-2.4kg
Length: 64-89cm
Wingspan: 100cm
NO UK STATUS / IUCN Red List: Least Concern

The Pelagic Cormorant is a fairly small cormorant found around the rim of the Northern Pacific, from Southern Japan to Mexico. I saw this species twice, both times in Hokkaido.  Despite the name, both of the individuals I saw were close in to shore, the former close out on the sea, and this second individual that the picture above shows one that was feeding inside Shiranuka harbour itself.

Related Species:
Order: Suliformes
Family: Phalacrocoracidae
Genus: Phalacrocorax
Subspecies: P. p. pelagicus, P. p. resplendens

 - Sighting Locations -

JAPAN - Widespread Coastal Resident
 - TOKYO/HOKKAIDO 2014 TRIP: Seen at Shiranuka (1 Winter plumage adult, on the sea) and Akkeshi (1 Winter Plumage adult, on the sea)

Further Notes: RSPB, Wikipedia, BirdGuides, BirdForum Opus, Arkive, IUCN Red List

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