Phalacrocorax auritus 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Aves Suliformes Phalacrocoracidae

Scientific Name: Phalacrocorax auritus
Species Authority: (Lesson, 1831)
Common Name(s):
English Double-crested Cormorant
Taxonomic Source(s): del Hoyo, J., Collar, N.J., Christie, D.A., Elliott, A. and Fishpool, L.D.C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Lynx Edicions BirdLife International.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2012
Date Assessed: 2012-05-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S. & Symes, A.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Butchart, S., Calvert, R., Ekstrom, J.
This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). The population trend appears to be increasing, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is extremely large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2009 Least Concern (LC)
2008 Least Concern (LC)
2004 Least Concern (LC)
2000 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)
1994 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)
1988 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: The Double-crested Cormorant is widely distributed across North America, from the Aleutian Islands and Alaska (USA) down to north-west Mexico on the Pacific coast, and from North Carolina (USA) down to Cuba on the Atlantic coast. Summer breeding grounds also include much of the United States and southern-central and eastern Canada1.
Countries occurrence:
Antigua and Barbuda; Bahamas; Barbados; Belize; Bermuda; Canada; Cayman Islands; Cuba; Dominica; Dominican Republic; Guadeloupe; Haiti; Martinique; Mexico; Montserrat; Puerto Rico; Saint Kitts and Nevis; Saint Lucia; Saint Pierre and Miquelon; Saint Vincent and the Grenadines; Turks and Caicos Islands; United States
Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba; Curaçao; Ireland; Jamaica; Portugal; Sint Maarten (Dutch part); United Kingdom; Virgin Islands, British; Virgin Islands, U.S.
Present - origin uncertain:
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO): Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO): No
Estimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2: 2400000
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO): Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in extent of occurrence (EOO): No
Continuing decline in number of locations: Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in the number of locations: No
Upper elevation limit (metres): 2000
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Current Population Trend: Increasing
Additional data:
Continuing decline of mature individuals: Unknown
Extreme fluctuations: No Population severely fragmented: No
Continuing decline in subpopulations: Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in subpopulations: No All individuals in one subpopulation: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This species habitat ranges widely, including sheltered marine waters such as estuaries, bays and mangrove swamps, rocky coasts and coastal islands, and inland on lakes, rivers, swamps, reservoirs and ponds. Its diet it almost exclusively fish with a few crustaceans, with the prey species changing depending on locality. Prey is caught by pursuit-diving, and individuals can fish co-operatively, sometimes with thousands of birds together at one time. It begins laying from April to July, nesting on a wide variety of substrates forming colonies sometimes over thousands of pairs strong (del Hoyo et al. 1992).
Systems: Terrestrial; Freshwater; Marine
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat: Unknown
Generation Length (years): 8.6
Movement patterns: Full Migrant
Congregatory: Congregatory (and dispersive)

Citation: BirdLife International. 2012. Phalacrocorax auritus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2012: e.T22696776A40316764. . Downloaded on 25 November 2015.
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