Well, not really my back yard but only a couple of miles away. It seems that Wakodahatchee Wetlands has been hosting a pair of Neotropic Cormorants for some time and none of the locals noticed. On January 23rd a gentleman from New York took some pictures and when he got home and reviewed them he noticed that one of the Cormorants looked different. He subsequently sent the photo’s to a local and the word got out that we had a Neotropic Cormorant at Wakodahatchee. What a year bird for my quest!!!
The question has been raised how could both of these birds not be discovered by a local. They have obviously been around awhile as they are interacting with the Double-crested Cormorants who are nesting. Today I saw one of them mating with a DCC and the other one feeding another Cormorant (species to be determined). I also got pictures of one gathering nesting material!!!
I’ve been to Wakodahatchee 4-5 times this year and not once did I scan the DCC’s for someone different. The island that they nest on has been denuded of foliage and generally is pretty smelly, ugly mess. Most people I’ve talked to have said the same thing … they just don’t stop and look.
I guess this rarity, only the 7th record in Florida, will teach us all a lesson about not taking the obvious and common place for granted as there might be a diamond in the rough!
You can see all 143 birds I’ve photographed this year in Palm Beach County on my Flickr page right here …