Great Cormorant is a beautiful bird, widespread throughout the world. Adult in breeding plumage has glossy black plumage overall, with bronze reflections on lower back, rump and wings, and rather blue in upper back and tail. Plumage shows scaled effect.
Underparts are black. We can see a conspicuous white patch on the thighs.
On the head, the chin is black, but cheeks and throat are covered with bare white skin. Head is black with more or less white feathers on the loosely crested nape which is formed by elongated feathers. The thin, straight bill is horn-coloured, with yellow to orange-red gape and hooked tip. The eyes are emerald. The short legs and the webbed feet are black.
Length: 80-100 cm
Wingspan: 130-160 cm
Weight: 1800-2800 g
Cormorant feeds primarily on fish, but it also takes crustaceans and amphibians. It usually feeds in shallow water. When the prey is caught with the bill, the bird brings it to the surface, in order to shake it and then, it tosses it before swallowing in the right way.
It swims under water in order to pursue its prey, only using its webbed feet. Outside breeding season, birds may fish in small groups, but they are often seen alone.
Cormorants spend most of their time sitting upright in rows on a sandy bank, or trees and man-made structures.
Great Cormorants have special feathers witch allow air to escape and water to penetrate the plumage. Under water, swimming is more efficient. But it means that the bird has to dry its plumage in a characteristic posture, with wings spread out, perched on a branch. This pose may also help to digestion. It consumes about 400 to 700 grams of fish per day.
Cormorant frequents open marine and inland waters. It is found on rocky or sandy sheltered coasts and estuaries.
It is rarely seen far from the coast.
Cormorant breeds on cliffs, among boulders, man-made structures and inshore islands. The birds which nest inland breed on trees, bushes, in reedbeds and even on the bare ground.
Calls and songs:
Great Cormorant utters guttural croaking at nest and roost.
It is rather silent when away from the colony.
Methods of hunting permitted for use:
- The movable method of hunting. Usually on foot (or by boat) and is independently actively engaged in the search for prey, without waiting for it in the shelter. In search of prey, an accurate shot must be found and get the desired trophy
- Fixed method of hunting. When the hunter equips various kinds of shelter from which he looks for prey and shoots the game on flights or on landing. This type of hunting requires a great deal of patience, perseverance and endurance.
Experienced hunters know that very tasty shurpa can be made from cormorant. It is not necessary to use only young poultry meat. You just need to have knowledge of how to properly handle it.
The cormorants are taken off the feathers along with the skin. Take the meat of the breast and back of the carcass. Then it is soaked for a while – from ten minutes to several hours. Simply put the meat in running water. Although you can cook it in a special marinade.
Various spices will be a great addition. There are many options for exactly which seasoning is best to add.