Sea Lions and Imperial Cormorant (Photo : Flickr/Creative Commons: DFaulder)
A group of researchers from the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) and the National Research Council of Argentina watched as an imperial cormorant dove 150 feet underwater in 40 seconds and then fed on the ocean floor for 80 seconds where it eventually caught a snakelike fish. The spectacle ended with the bird returning to the surface 40 seconds later.
Like Us on Facebook
The imperial cormorant was fitted with a camera on its back which enabled the scientists to watch the action as it unfolded. It represented the first time that researchers were able watch the feeding techniques of this bird which resides off the coast of Argentina.
The footage was taken at Punta León in Patagonia, Argentina, a coastal protected area which supports more than 3,500 pairs of imperial cormorants.
The WCS scientific team which is led by Dr. Flavio Quintana has been studying the cormorants' feeding behavior for the past ten years. The team has already tracked more than 400 cormorants along the Patagonian Coast of Argentina using cutting edge technological tools such as multi-channel archival tags and high resolution GPS-loggers. The hope is to identify priority feeding areas in order to help design new protected areas and understand environmental conditions that affect cormorant populations.
The WCS team was joined by Dr. Carlos Zavalaga along with Ken Yoda from the University of Nogoya, Japan to fit the camera on the bird.
Watch the Video Below: