Kāruhiruhi- Adult Pied Shag – Cormorán

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Adult Pied Shag
Photos: Lina Marin
When a predator, such as a kāhu (Australasian harrier) approaches a shag nesting colony, the chicks will jump into the water long before they can fly to escape being eaten. Amazingly, the young chicks are very good at climbing back up to the nest.  There are some 36 species of shag worldwide. Twelve of these are found in New Zealand, of which eight are endemic (found nowhere else).  In many countries, shags are called cormorants.  Juveniles are a lighter brown on the back and the white parts are mottled with pale brown. They lack the blue eye and yellow face patch of the adults. Kāruhiruhi usually leave ZEALANDIA early in the morning to feed in the harbour, and return in the late afternoon.

Source: Zealandia Ecosanctuary

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