Cormorant - Phalacrocorax carbo


A large and conspicuous waterbird, the Cormorant has an almost primitive appearance with its long neck making it appear almost reptilian. It is often seen standing with its wings held out to dry.

Identification difficulty

Found around the UK coastline on rocky shores, coastal lagoons and estuaries, it is increasingly being seen inland at reservoirs, lakes and gravel pits.

When to see it

All year round

Life History

Regarded by some as black, sinister and greedy, cormorants are supreme fishers, which can bring them into conflict with anglers and they have been persecuted in the past. The UK holds internationally important wintering numbers.

UK Status

Fairly common and widespread in Britain

VC55 Status

Fairly common in Leicestershire and Rutland both over-wintering and as a breeding bird.

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Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map