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European Shag

Phalacrocorax aristotelis

Description:

Shags are goose-sized dark long-necked birds similar to cormorants but smaller and generally slimmer with a characteristic steep forehead. In the breeding season adults develop a dark glossy green plumage and prominent recurved crest on the front of their head.

Habitat:

In the UK they breed on coastal sites, mainly in the north and west, and over half their population is found at fewer than 10 sites, making them an Amber List species. Shags usually stay within 100-200km of their breeding grounds. During the breeding season at their large Scottish colonies on Orkney, Shetland, the Inner Hebrides and the Firth of Forth. Elsewhere they can be seen commonly around the coasts of Wales and South West England (especially Devon and Cornwall).

1 Species ID Suggestions

Liam
Liam 9 years ago
European Shag
Phalacrocorax aristotelis European Shag


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5 Comments

ColinMacleod
ColinMacleod 9 years ago

Thanks for the ID, Liam.

ColinMacleod
ColinMacleod 9 years ago

Yes, the beak seems to be black, but there's a yellow patch under the eye. Not sure about the swan, Joshua - this one was diving for fish in a very un-swanlike way!

MaryEvans2
MaryEvans2 9 years ago

Is that a yellow marking(patch) under its eye?

Joshuab123
Joshuab123 9 years ago

it is a raer black swan

ColinMacleod
ColinMacleod 9 years ago

I'm pretty sure this is a cormorant or a shag, but that's all I've got...

ColinMacleod
Spotted by
ColinMacleod

Scotland, United Kingdom

Spotted on Mar 20, 2012
Submitted on Apr 4, 2012

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