Paracas Natural Reserve (Ica-Peru)
A little shaky, but you can see them diving! Filmed this on January 2007 (sorry for the bad quality, it was a plain digital camera)

Guanay Cormorant or Guanay Shag

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Pelecaniformes
Family: Phalacrocoracidae
Genus: Phalacrocorax
Species: P. bougainvillii

It is a resident bird living on the Pacific Ocean coast in Peru and north of Chile. It is about 78cm from the tip of the bill to the end of the tail.

Its bill is greyish with some red at the base. The face is red with a green eyering. It has roseate feet. Head, neck and back are black as are the outer parts of the thighs. The throat patch, breast and belly are white. In breeding plumage it has a few white feathers on the sides of head and neck.

Breeding occurs year round with a peak in November/December. The nest made of guano is build on flat surfaces on offshore islands or remote headlands. There are up to 3 nests per square meter in high density colonies. The Guanay Cormorant lays two or three eggs of approximately 63x40mm in size.

It feeds mainly on the Peruvian anchoveta, Engraulis ringens and the Peruvian silverside Odontesthes regia which thrive in the cold Humboldt Current. The Guanay Cormorant is the main producer of guano.
Habitat loss/degradation and over-fishing have resulted in a steady decline of the population of about 30% from an estimated figure of 3 Million birds in 1984. This species is listed as NT (near threatened) by IUCN. (References: Wikipedia, BirdLife International)

1 comment:

Mel said...

Hahahaha, I remember this amazing view, so many of them just diving!!