Australian Pied Cormorant
The Australian pied cormorant (Phalacrocorax varius), also known as the pied cormorant, pied shag, or great pied cormorant, is a medium-sized member of the cormorant family. It is found around the coasts of Australasia. In New Zealand, it is usually known either as the pied shag or by its Māori name of kāruhiruhi. Older sources may refer to it as the "yellow-faced cormorant".
The pied cormorant is predominantly black on its back and upper surface of the wings and white on the underside. A small yellow patch between the bill and the eye on each side of the head is likely to have been the reason for the historical common name. It has large webbed feet which it utilises to pursue fish underwater, steering with half opened wings. The bird has a large hooked bill, green eyes with a blue eye ring and black legs and feet. The eyes have a special nictitating membrane for underwater protection. The pied cormorant can often be seen spreading its wings after diving to help dry the feathers, as it has inadequate waterproofing. This lack of feather waterproofing may help the cormorant spend longer underwater due to decreased buoyancy effects.