PELAGIC CORMORANT

PELAGIC CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax pelagicus)

PELAGIC CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax pelagicus)

“Pelagic Cormorant (Phalacrocorax pelagicus) is the smallest of the cormorants found in the North Pacific, where it nests from Japan through Alaska to Northern Baja California (Palmer 1962). Pelagic Cormorants nest colonially on ledges and small crannies situated on inaccessible cliff faces; their colonies are usually smaller and much more scattered than Brandt's or Double-crested Cormorants. This species has nested on five of the Channel Islands, with most of the breeding colonies located in the northwesternmost islands. They no not nest on Santa Catalina, San Nicolas or San Clemente Islands... Pelagic Cormorants (Phalacrocorax pelagicus) were found by most early investigators at San Miguel Island, though again, few mentioned the numbers of birds present. Appleton (unpubl. notes) found 12 nests on “sea cliffs, away from other Cormorant spp.” and collected three sets of eggs on 6 June (one set of which is now at WFVZ 65939). Willett (1910) commented that they were ”breeding commonly on the cliffs everywhere” at San Miguel Island in June 1910. His party took one set of eggs each on 11 and 14 June (WFVZ uncat.). Wright and Snyder (1913), however, made no mention of it here when they visited on 11-13 July 1912. Pemberton (unpubl. notes in WFVZ) saw several pairs and took one egg set on 3 June 1928. Sheffler also took one set on 11 June 1933 (WFVZ 2919). Sumner (1939) observed about 50 individuals on Prince Island in mid-April 1939, but breeding activities were just beginning at that time. Craig and Sheppard (unpubl. notes) observed 250 pairs on Prince Island on 3-5 July 1965. In 1968 the P.O.B.S.P. (Huber 1968) counted five nests on Prince Island, 25 nests on Castle Rock and 100 nests on the main island.” [Marine Mammal and Seabird Survey of the Southern California Bight, Volume 3, Issue 3. University of California Santa Cruz et al., July 1978]”


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FARALLON ISLANDS
ISLAND COLLECTOR INSTITUTION DATE NUMBER SPECIMEN  
Farallon Islands Ferdinand Gruber NMNH undated (19th century) USNM-B2965.4141366 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Birds
Farallon Islands Ferdinand Gruber NMNH undated (19th century) USNM-B6155.4142380 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Birds
Farallon Islands Ferdinand Gruber NMNH undated (19th century) USNM-B6156.4142381 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Birds
Farallon Islands J. G. Cooper and Ferdinand Gruber MVZ June 16, 1862 MVZ-4411 Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens Birds
Farallon Islands Frank Craig WFVZ June 30, 1892 WFVZ-4505 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs
Farallon Islands Chester Barlow UF June 1, 1894 UF-983 Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens Eggs
Farallon Islands Chester Barlow PSM June 12, 1895 PSM-11730 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs
Farallon Islands Chester Barlow UF June 12, 1895 UF-983 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs
Farallon Islands Chester Barlow WFVZ June 12, 1895 WFVZ- 203185 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs
Farallon Islands Wilfred H. Osgood WFVZ June 18, 1894 WFVZ-116249 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs
Farallon Islands Wilfred H. Osgood NMNH June 19, 1894 USNM-B31608 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs
Farallon Islands Wilfred H. Osgood NYSM June 18, 1895 NYSM-11453 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs
Farallon Islands E. A. Shives WFVZ June 18, 1903 WFVZ-81302 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs


ANO NUEVO ISLAND
ISLAND COLLECTOR INSTITUTION DATE NUMBER SPECIMEN  
Año Nuevo Island Chase Littlejohn & Willis H. Jackson WFVZ June 18, 1899 WFVZ-81317 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs
Año Nuevo Island Chase Littlejohn & Willis H. Jackson WFVZ June 18, 1899 WFVZ-81318 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs


ANACAPA ISLAND
ISLAND COLLECTOR INSTITUTION DATE NUMBER SPECIMEN  
Anacapa Island Charles Ashworth & R. E. Thompson OMNH May 11, 1930 OMNH-2518 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs
Anacapa Island W. G. Abbott SBMNH February 21, 1964 SBMNH-322 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Birds


SAN CLEMENTE ISLAND

1907 San Clemente Island:Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens. Baird Cormorant. A few pairs were seen near Mosquito Harbor, during March. These were in breeding plumage (white flank patches). One specimen in winter plumage, taken in October. ” [“Visits were made to Clemente in January, February, March, April and October, 1907.”]
Linton, C. B. Notes from San Clemente Island The Condor 10:82-86, March 1908


1984 San Clemente Island: “PELAGIC CORMORANT (Phalacrocorax pelagicus). Uncommon year-round, no breeding records. Breninger (1904) said "they were reported to have nested," but he furnished no evidence.”
The Birds of San Clemente Island, 1984


SAN MIGUEL ISLAND
ISLAND COLLECTOR INSTITUTION DATE NUMBER SPECIMEN  
San Miguel Island J. S. Appleton WFVZ June 6, 1906 WFVZ-21669 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs
San Miguel Island (Prince Island) J. S. Appleton WFVZ June 6, 1906 WFVZ-63452 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs
San Miguel Island O. W. Howard WFVZ June 14, 1910 WFVZ-95600 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs
San Miguel Island Chester Lamb MVZ October 2, 1927 MVZ-51452 Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens Birds
San Miguel Island (Prince Island) J. R. Pemberton WFVZ June 3, 1928 WFVZ-192121 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs
San Miguel Island (Prince Island) W. J. Sheffler WFVZ June 11, 1933 WFVZ-113682 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs
San Miguel Island W. J. Sheffler WFVZ June 11, 1933 WFVZ-65938 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs
San Miguel Island (Prince Island) J. E. Green SDNHM April 29, 1938 SDNHM-17923 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Birds
San Miguel Island (Prince Island) J. E. Green SDNHM April 30, 1938 SDNHM-17924 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Birds


SAN NICOLAS ISLAND
ISLAND COLLECTOR INSTITUTION DATE NUMBER SPECIMEN  
Santa Barbara Island SBMNH October 8, 1989 SBMNH-10231 Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens Birds


SANTA BARBARA ISLAND

1897 Santa Barbara Island:Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens—Baird's Cormorant. This Cormorant was seen only at Santa Barbara Island, where it was nesting in smaller numbers than either of the other species. The nests were unique, in always being inaccessible. They were built either on a narrow projection of rock, or in a niche on the face of a cliff. Seldom more than two or three nests were seen in any one place. The birds were apparently incubating. Two specimens of the Baird's Cormorant were taken... Entire List of Water-Birds Observed. [March 26-April 4; May 11-June 9]. The party [of the second trip] consisted of Joseph Grinnell, who had immediate charge of the expedition, and gave special attention to the ornithology and entomology of the islands; Horace Gaylord, who collected mammals; and Harry Gaylord and James Brittan [Britton] who devoted their time to archaeology. The party left San Pedro harbor May 11 in a large fishing schooner... [returning June 9, 1897]”
Grinnell, Joseph The Islands of Santa Barbara, San Nicolas and San Clemente, in the Spring of 1897 Pasadena Academy of Sciences Publication No. 1, August, 1897 (26 pages).


ISLAND COLLECTOR INSTITUTION DATE NUMBER SPECIMEN  
Santa Barbara Island Kenneth E. Stager UMMZ March 16, 1940 UMMZ-120392 Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens Birds
Santa Barbara Island Kenneth E. Stager UMMZ March 16, 1940 UMMZ-120393 Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens Birds


SANTA CATALINA ISLAND
ISLAND COLLECTOR INSTITUTION DATE NUMBER SPECIMEN  
Santa Catalina Island G. Dines CAS August 1950 CAS-87605 Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens Birds


SANTA CRUZ ISLAND

1886 Santa Cruz Island: Eli Whitney Blake, Jr. visited Santa Cruz Island twice in 1886: from July 4- July 24, and again August 6-September 3. During his visits, Blake camped in a canyon near Platt's Harbor. He noted:

Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens. BAIRD'S CORMORANT. — Less common than Phalacrocorax penicillatus; probably breeds.”


1907 Santa Cruz Island:Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens. Baird Cormorant. Common.” [“At 11:30 p. m., November 19, 1907, my father (H. Linton), Mr. George Willett, and myself left San Pedro harbor in a dilapidated fishing smack and in company with a crawfisherman, one “Cold-foot” Jorgensen. We arrived off the south end of Santa Cruz Island at 10:30 the following day during a stiff norwester. For various reasons we were unable to make camp until the 22nd. It may not be amiss to state here that twice during the blow we were nearly wrecked: once while at anchor in Potatoe Harbor, a broken anchor allowing the boat to drift within the breaker line and nearly onto the rocks. In this instance the timely arrival of Willett and H. Linton in a small boat, saved the day, and incidentally the fishing smack. At another time (the engine having broken down) we were blown nearly onto the rocks of Anacapa Island; but with father at the wheel and Willett and I on the “sheet” we managed to hold her off. I mention the foregoing, and the many sleepless nights spent on the rocky shores, “running” the surf several times each day (with attendant duckings), etc., merely as a warning to those who seem inclined to believe a field naturalists ’ life “strewn with roses”. (Its ’ generally strewn with cacti!)”]
Linton, C. B. Notes from Santa Cruz Island] The Condor 10(3):124-129, May 1908


ISLAND COLLECTOR INSTITUTION DATE NUMBER SPECIMEN  
Santa Cruz Island C. A. Menefee MCZ June 24, 1889 MCZ-251227 Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens Birds
Santa Cruz Island L.N. Huber UAZ July 13, 1970 UAZ-010268 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Birds
Santa Cruz Island L.N. Huber UAZ July 13, 1970 UAZ-013305 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Birds
Santa Cruz Island L.N. Huber UAZ July 13, 1970 UAZ-013306 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Birds


SANTA ROSA ISLAND

1927 Santa Rosa Island:Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens. Baird Cormorant. Many of these two cormorants [Brandt Cormorant] were seen on April 3. Both species were observed nesting on San Miguel and Santa Barbara islands and no doubt were nesting here also.” [“Through the generosity of Mr. Silsby M. Spalding who placed at our disposal his splendid cruiser Padariva I the writer accompanied by H. W. Carriger, Dudley DeGroot and 0. W. Howard was enabled to spend the period from March 25 to April 5, 1927, inclusive, among the Channel Islands off the coast of southern California.”]
Pemberton, J. R. Additions to the known avifauna of the Santa Barbara Islands The Condor 30(2):144-148, March-April 1928


ISLAS CORONADOS
ISLAND COLLECTOR INSTITUTION DATE NUMBER SPECIMEN  
Islas Coronados J. Hazelwood MVZApril 17, 1897 MVZ -4570 Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens Eggs
Islas Coronados A. J. Van Rossem UCLA April 8, 1908 UCLA-11202 Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens Birds
Islas Coronados P. I. Osburn MCZ April 23, 1910 MCZ-318522 Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens Birds
Islas Coronados A. J. Van Rossem MCZ March 8, 1913 MCZ-80273 Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens Birds
Islas Coronados E. E. Sechrist CHAS May 27, 1916 CHAS-869 Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens eggs
Islas Coronados (unlisted) ANSP May 27, 1916 ANSP-193498 Phalacrocorax pelagicus resplendens Birds
Islas Coronados H. A. Edwards WFVZ May 12, 1922 Phalacrocorax pelagicus Eggs