Bird Species of the World's Boreal Forests


Phalacrocorax carbo
Great Cormorant
(European Cormorant)


Distinguishing Features - Large water bird; bill slender, upper mandible strongly hooked. Overall colouration: primarily glossy bluish black or greenish black, but feathers of the upper back, scapulars and wing coverts appear bronzy brown with wide black margins. Lenght: average 94 cm; adult male wing: average 350 mm; female 335 mm.

Great Cormorant Habitat

Breeds in Europe, Asia, southern Greenland to Canada's southern Atlantic coast; in coastal salt water. Seldom leaves sight of land. Nests on coastal cliffs; occasionally in trees.


Dives for most of its food - fish; sometimes amphibians and crustaceans.


Cormorants sit very upright, often with half spread wings. Great cormorants are usually silent, but on nesting grounds, they communicate with a variety of growls, croaks and chucks.

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