Swans versus Cormorants

Hell, it’s a dangerous world out there, or so I witnessed this morning while leaning half asleep against a window frame, waiting for the coffee machine to finish drip-drip-dripping. As I glanced cross-eyed across the river, I noticed several birds flying in from the Palu Wetlands just downriver from us.

A flock, clutch, brotherhood, brace … no, a Gulp of Cormorants* settled on the Charente river and commenced fishing for their breakfast.

Swans vs Cormorants

Now you see them – now you don’t.

Swans vs Cormorants

*The term ‘A gulp of cormorants’ was taken from the utterly delightfully nerdy post “A Dissimulation of Birds” by Burly Birds [** My own invention]

While fishing, the cormorants inadvertently got closer and closer to a Swagger of Swans** feeding close to the bank below our house.

Swans vs Cormorants

The cormorants paid no heed to their large cousins, being focused exclusively on spearing small river fish. I saw the shiny silver tidbits disappear in their gullets again and again. The hunt was quite successful this morning!

The swans, however, being so much more slow-grazing and placidly-drifting felt crowded by the hectic divers and moved to defend their realm against the hook-beaked dark-feathered cormorants.

Swans vs Cormorants

Dive, brothers, dive!!Swans vs Cormorants

Just as quickly as tempers flared, they calmed again and peace resumed on the Charente.

Swans vs Cormorants

Time to fly home to La Palu for a post-breakfast snooze.

Swans vs Cormorants

And my coffee was ready as well!

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