White Breasted Cormorant (Phalacrocorax lucidus) Profile

White Breasted Cormorant

The white-breasted cormorant, scientific name Phalacrocorax lucidus is very like the widespread nice cormorant and if not a regional variant of the identical species, is no less than very intently associated. It’s distinguished from different types of good cormorant by its white breast and by the truth that subpopulations are freshwater birds.

White-Breasted Cormorant (Phalacrocorax lucidus) Profile

Phalacrocorax lucidus is to not be confused with the smaller and really totally different endemic South Australian black-faced cormorant, which additionally is usually referred to as the white-breasted cormorant.

White-breasted cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo)


90 cm

Taxonomy and outline

The white-breasted cormorant, Phalacrocorax lucidus is a member of the cormorant household Phalacrocoracidae. Its taxonomic standing has been below dialogue for a long time and several other questions nonetheless haven’t been definitively settled.

Phalacrocorax lucidus generally is handled as a subspecies of the good cormorant, Phalacrocorax carbo lucidus, however, some authorities retain its unique remedy as an allospecies within the P. carbo superspecific group, through which case it’s known as Phalacrocorax lucidus. A black-necked kind initially categorized as Phalacrocorax patricki or Phalacrocorax carbo patricki is now considered synonymous with Phalacrocorax lucidus.

As its identity suggests, the 80–100 cm lengthy white-breasted cormorant has a white neck and breast when grown up and the white space tends to extend because the chicken turns into extra mature. In different respects, it’s a giant cormorant typically resembling the good cormorant.

The smaller and really totally different southern Australian black-faced cormorant, Phalacrocorax fuscescens, can be generally referred to as the white-breasted cormorant.

White-Breasted Cormorant Distribution

The white-breasted cormorant is the one type of nice cormorant present in Sub-Saharan Africa, the one kind that has strictly freshwater populations and the one kind with a white breast and throat; it does nevertheless interbreed freely with dark-breasted varieties in central Africa.

It has a large distribution; on the west coast from the Cape Verde Islands to Guinea-Bissau and from Angola to the Cape of Good Hope and northwards on the east coast to Mozambique.

It happens across the whole Southern African shoreline, however, it isn’t clear whether or not the coastal populations are separate from the inland populations.

On the African mainland, it happens extra regularly in jap and southern elements, somewhat than within the drier western areas, the place it often is discovered solely on perennial rivers and dams.

On inland waters it generally happens along with the reed cormorant and the African darter, however, it’s ecologically separated from these species by its fishing habits and the dimensions and nature of its prey.

There are additionally inland populations in Nigeria and around Lake Chad, and in jap and southern Africa from Sudan southwards. It may be discovered across the Purple Sea, the place it’s generally known as the Purple Sea white-breasted cormorant.

White Breasted Cormorant

White-Breasted Cormorant Look

The grownup white-breasted cormorant is recognized by the massive measurement, shiny darkish brown plumage, and white underparts from the throat to the breast.

The immature birds are fully off-white beneath and are a lot whiter than the immature reed cormorant.

White-Breasted Cormorant Diet

The white-breasted cormorant in South Africa primarily eats fish and dives in stints of as much as about 82 seconds, though significantly much less in freshwater.

The jaw is customized to deal with bottom-dwelling slow-moving fish, however, it might catch quicker fish that dwell nearer to the floor. Smaller fish are swallowed underwater, however, bigger fish must be taken to shore.

White-Breasted Cormorant Breeding

The white-breasted cormorant breeds all year long in South Africa.

The height durations are August or January within the Cape and March to October inland. The nest is inbuilt roughly every week by the feminine, with materials collected by the male.

The nest is a flat platform of sticks, twigs, and feathers. The feminine lay 3 – 4, sometimes 5, chalky-white eggs with a greenish-blue tinge when contemporary. Incubation is completed by each dad and mom.

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