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Home : China Guide : Yangshuo : Cormorant Fishing

Cormorant is a kind of large and conspicuous waterbird, the cormorant has an almost primitive appearance with its long neck making it appear almost reptilian. It is often seen standing with its wings held out to dry. Regarded by some as black, sinister and greedy, cormorants are supreme fishers which can bring them into conflict with anglers and they have been persecuted in the past.

fisherman and fishing bird on li river,yangshuo (Click to see details)The cormorant is a fascinating bird. It is able to dive under water and stay there for a long time. While it is under water it searches for fish. The bird then catches the fish in its beak and returns to the surface.

The bird is unable to swallow the fish as a string has been tied loosely around its neck. The fisherman, who is on a bamboo raft will lift the bird onto the raft and remove the fish and drop it into a basket. The bird then goes back into the water to try to catch more. You can view this in the evenings. The local travel agencies and local guides can arrange this for you.

The birds are treated very well all of their lives. In the past, and in some cases still now, they are essential for catching food for their families. In some guide books you will read that cormorants eat every 7th fish they catch. This is true for some birds, but you may also be able to view that some fisherman continue fishing after your show and the birds eat all of their new catch.

Vital Statistics
Eggs: 3-4                    Incubation: 28-31 days
Fledging: 50 days        Maximum lifespan: 23 years
Length: 80-100cm       Wingspan: 130-160cm
Weight: 1,700-3,000g

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