Date of this Version
Phalacrocorax brasilianus (Neotropic Cormorant) has been observed with increasing frequency in the alluvial plain (Delta region) of Mississippi. In the past 6 years, 22 individuals have been observed in 20 separate sightings during spring and summer. These sightings have occurred at breeding colonies of other colonial waterbirds and commercial aquaculture facilities of Ictalurus punctatus (Channel Catfish). Two sexually mature Neotropic Cormorants have been collected at a colonial waterbird breeding colony near the Mississippi River in the western Delta region among flocks of Phalacrocorax auritus (Double-crested Cormorants). Twice during the summer of 2008, confirmed nesting of Neotropic Cormorants were documented in the Delta region of Mississippi. The increased abundance and range expansion of Neotropic Cormorants in the Delta region of Mississippi may be a result of the readily available food source of cultured Channel Catfish.