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Friday, November 24, 2017

AUSTRALASIAN GANNET COLONY, MURIWAI REGIONAL PARK, AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND, 10/27/2017

   We can ID this bird as an Australasian Gannet by its large size, creamy gold head, mostly white plumage, black primaries and secondaries, dark patch around eyes, slate grey legs and bluish-grey bill.
   About 1,200 pairs of garnets nest at Muriwai from August to March each year.  Each pair lays one egg and the parents take turns on the nest.  Once airborne the young gannets cross the Tasman Sea to Australia.  A few years later, surviving birds return to secure a nest in the colony. 
   The Australasian Gannet is a new species to our Photographic Life List, which now stands at 727.