15 October 2007

What are these birds?

AssateagueBirds2

I am not much of a birder. I own a couple of bird books, but the number of birds that I can identify by sight is about 10 if "gull" or "some type of hawk" count as identifications.

I photographed this flock last Friday afternoon from the beach at the Assateague Island National Seashore. I just spent about 15 minutes with my bird books to no avail. So much for my birding talents. Someone please identify them. They were quite far when I took the picture, but I think there are enough clues in the pictures. Thanks.

AssateagueBirds1

6 comments:

pascal said...

They're cormorants, likely a Great Cormorant.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Cormorant

AYDIN ÖRSTAN said...

I thought their necks & heads looked like those of cormorants, but I couldn't quite match them with anything in my books. I guess they are young birds with white bellies.

Dan said...

Close (taxonomically), but the orange around the base of the bill (and lack of white surrounding that) tells me it's a Double-crested cormorant.

Frank Anderson said...

I was going to go with "duck".

And you think you aren't a birder...

John said...

Dan's right; they're double-crested cormorants. Bellies on immature double-crested cormorants are dark, while immature great cormorants have light bellies.

Michael Barton, FCD said...

Here's a good drawing:
http://www.paulnoll.com/Oregon/Birds/Likely/likely-Cormorant-Double-crested.html