The first January I was in this house, one Sunday morning I heard this awful sound outside. I went out back and there, in my cypress tree and in the neighbor's pecan tree was a flock of these huge black birds with yellow beaks.
I called my brother and asked what they were. A veteran watcher of informative television programs about nature, he knew right away that comorants were visiting.
They visit every year on their way to wherever they are going. They visit a week, then they're gone again. Yesterday I took pictures and counted their numbers: 31 in one tree and a dozen in my tree. They were leary of me, of course.
Oh yes, in addition to their distinctive sounds, they also do a display of their wings. Actually, they spread out their wings after being in the water in order to dry them.
Here's a link that shows their size and coloring and wing span. Look at the bottom and click on the audibles to hear their croakings.
Post Note: 2-8-16
In recent conversations my brother informed me that commorants could swim as well as fly and that a flock of hundreds can decimate the fish in a body of water in no time. I already knew that they were a destroyer of salmon beds. Anyway, I told him that I had not seen them in the water at all. However, today, I did see six commorants come up out of the water (they were below the surface) and fly off. They probably ate our bayou fish. I'll know soon enough if they ate too many.
Books on my very ambitious TBR list (*denotes read)
- *Reading Magic: Why Reading Aloud to our Children Will Change Their Lives Forever by Mem Fox
- The Odd Women by George Gissing
- The Zen of Fish by Trevor Corson
- How to Get Your Child to Love Reading by Esme Raji Codell
- The Cod Tale by Mark Kurlansky
- In This House of Brede by Rumer Godden
- *Joan of Arc by Mark Twain
- Dag Hammarskjold by Elizabeth Rider Montgomery
- The Wisdom in the Hebrew Alphabet by Rabbi Michael L. Munk
- Children of Strangers by Lyle Saxon
- Spiritual Writings by Flannery O'Connor
- Nightmares and Visions: Flannery O'Connor and the Catholic Grotesque by Gilbert H. Muller
- The Violent Bear It Away by Flannery O'Connor
- Flannery O'Connor's South by Robert Coles
- Wise Blood by Flannery O'Connor
- Sylvanus Now by Donna Morrissey
- *Vincent de Paul by Margaret Ann Hubbard
- Reading Lolita in Tehran by Azar Nafisi
- A Briefer History of Time by Stephen Hawking
- The Library at Night by Alberto Manguel
- Readicide by Kelly Gallagher
- *Ruined by Paula Morris
- Say You're Not One of Them by Uwem Akpan
- Wandering Star by J.M.G. Le Clezio
- Silence by Shusaku Endo
- *The Assault by Harry Mulisch
- Kari's Saga by Robert Jansson
- *The German Mujahid by Boualem Sansal
- Western Skies by Joseph Conrad
- *The Giver by Lois Lowery
- *Imperium by Ryszard Kapuscinski