Cormorants are large black birds with long necks, long cylindrical hooked bills and webbed feet—a bird well adapted to swimming, diving and fishing. You’ll most often see them clustered on rocks, piers or trees along beaches, harbor islands and other waterfronts. On land, Cormorants stand upright, often with their wings partially extended in order to dry them out. In the air, the birds fly in long lines or wedge shaped formations.
On the water, Cormorants ride low like loons, but with their long bills always tilting upwards, a distinctive identity trait. Only during the breeding season does the double crest—several small feathers curling over the crown of the head—become visible