H2: Basic Description
The Red-faced Cormorant (Phalacrocorax urile) is an impressive seabird that belongs to the family Phalacrocoracidae. This unique bird species measures around 70 cm in length and can weigh up to 3.5 kg. It has a distinctive red face and throat pouch, with black feathers on its head, back, wings, and tail.
H2: Where To Find This Bird
This beautiful bird is mainly found along the coasts of Alaska, Kamchatka Peninsula in Russia, Aleutian Islands off Alaska’s coast, and Hokkaido Island in Japan. During breeding season from May to August, these birds migrate towards rocky coastal areas where they build their nests.
The Red-faced Cormorant is a coastal seabird that prefers nesting on large cliffs or rocky outcrops overlooking the ocean for protection against predators like eagles or foxes. These birds are solitary nesters who often return to the same location year after year.
The primary food source for this bird species comprises small fish like cods or pollock which they catch by diving underwater up to depths of 50 meters using their webbed feet as fins while holding onto rocks with their strong claws so they don’t drift away with water currents.
H2: Cool Facts
– The red facial skin changes color depending on whether it’s breeding season or not; during courtship rituals when males try to attract females.
– They have oil glands near tail-feathers which produce oil used for waterproofing feathers.
– Unlike other cormorants who spread their wings horizontally to dry off after swimming under water since they lack waterproof feather coverings unlike ducks , the Red-faced Cormorant holds its wings vertically upright till it dries-off completely
– Due unavailability of trees where cliff-side caves serves as substitute , these birds use guano (bird droppings) to build their nests, but over the year’s accumulation of guano has led to erosion and collapse of nesting sites themselves.
In conclusion, Red-faced Cormorants are beautiful and unique seabirds that have adapted well to their coastal habitat. With their impressive diving skills, they can survive even in cold waters while hunting for food. It is fascinating how this species uses bird droppings as building materials for their nests! These birds are definitely worth watching out for during your next trip along the coasts of Alaska or Japan!