Phalacrocorax graculus (Linn.), Syst. Nat. i. p. 217 (1766) ; (Naum.), xi. p. 88, Taf. 280 ; Gould, B. of Gt. Brit. v. pl. 53 ; Dresser, vi. p. 163, pl. 389 ; Grant, Cat. B. Br. Mus. xxvi. p. 364 ; Saunders, p. 363 ; Lilford, vii. p. 5, pl. 2 ; P. cristatus (Muller), Zool. Dan. Prodr. p. 18, No. 150 (1776) ; Hewitson, ii. p. 473, pl. cxxx. fig. 2 ; Gould, B. of E. v. pls. 410, 411 ; P. desmaresti (Payraudeau), Ann. Sc. Nat. 1826, p. 460 ; Grant, op. cit. xxvi. p. 368.
Cormoran-largup, French ; Corvo marinho da crista, Portug. ; Marangone col ciuffo, Ital. ; Krahenscharbe, German ; Gekuifde Aalscholver, Dutch ; Topskarv, Dan. ; Krakskarf, Norweg. ; Toppskarf, Swed.
Male ad. (Scotland). General colour silky blackish green, the head and neck greener ; back, scapulars, and wing-coverts paler and margined with velvety black ; on the back of the crown a broad recurved crest ; bill black, the nail yellowish brown, the basal portion and the bare portion of the chin yellowish marked with black ; angle of mouth orange ; bare space round the eye and legs black ; a yellowish spot at the base of the bill ; iris rich green. Gape 3.6, wing 9.9, tail 5.7, tarsus 2.4 inch. Female similar but smaller. After the breeding season the crest is cast. The young bird is brown with a greenish tinge above, and has the chin, throat, and middle of the abdomen white or whitish, the rest of the under parts brownish ash ; bill dusky brown above, brownish flesh below ; bare skin at the base of bill and round the eye dusky yellow ; legs dusky brown. In this and all other members of the genus the nestling is blackish, covered with blackish down.
Hab. The coasts of Europe up into the Arctic Circle, but not far up the Baltic, or on the coasts of Finland ; Iceland ; the Faeroes ; Mediterranean, Black and Caspian Seas.
In habits it resembles the Cormorant but it frequents the sea-coasts and is but seldom to be met with on fresh water. It is gregarious in its habits and breeds in societies, placing its nest, which is a large structure of seaweed, &c., on a rock or a rocky ledge in a cave, and in June or July deposits 3 or 4, sometimes even more, bluish white eggs covered with a chalky coating, elongated in shape and rather smaller than those of P. carlo. By some authors the Mediterranean Shag (P. desmaresti) has been subspecifically separated, the young bird having the under parts whiter or nearly white, but I cannot endorse this view.
781. Phalacrocorax graculus