The Reed cormorant

The Reed Cormorant is a fascinating bird very similar to the renowned African Darter – but the Cormorant has a few extra tricks up his sleeve!

Obtaining food is the most important part of any animal’s life. The Cormorant, like the Darter, goes “spear fishing” under water. In order to reduce its buoyancy it swallows a few small stones or pebbles to increase its weight so it can dive faster. Unlike most other birds, Cormorants lack a preening gland – otherwise the oil would cause extra buoyancy – but it does have its negative side. Once they are finished feeding they have to stand in the sun with their wings open to dry their feathers, otherwise they are too heavy and/or may damage their wings in flight.