Monday, May 23, 2005

Cormorants on Lake Michigan

On Saturday afternoon, my husband and I were sailing on Lake Michigan, and to my delight the northern water intake tank (about a mile off of Chicago's Montrose Harbor) was loaded with about 40 to 50 double-crested cormorants. Although, I didn't know at the time that's what they were. I came home and flipped through a bunch of books until I narrowed it down to that. I also posted this to the Illinois birding listserv, so I'm sure they'll set me straight if I'm way off.

My Birds of Illinois book tells me that the birds are likely migrating through, although some cormorants live in the northern parts of the state during the summer months. "Cormorant comes from the Latin word 'corvus,' meaning 'crow' and 'L. marinus,' meaning 'pertaining to the sea.' Literally, 'Sea Crow.'"

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