I think that this pond visitor is an older juvenile Double Crested Cormorant. Double Crested Cormorants are usually found in Tennessee closer to the Mississippi River. They don’t breed in large numbers here in Tennessee. This is the first one I have seen here in Cumberland County, TN. The Double Crested Cormorant will get darker in color and will have a slightly larger yellow to yellow-orange skin patch near its bill when fully grown. These aquatic birds eat fish, crayfish, and other small aquatic animals and larger aquatic insects. They tend to spend time with the herons. I am not 100% sure if this is a Double Crested Cormorant or if it is merely a Western Grebe or a Loon. My best guess is that it is a cormorant. I took these pictures yesterday in my yard. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture. Enjoy!
August 23, 2012