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Northern Gannets in Scotland - Feeding Frenzy

Discussion in 'Birds' started by bobhoge, Jun 20, 2007.

  1. While a Mousa Island in the Shetland Islands, about 90 miles north of the coast of Scotland, we saw a large group of Northern Gannets from the ship. They make spectacular plunge dives from about 100 feet in the air.

    Some came quite close to the ship (uncropped 70-300VR @230mm & 300mm)


    While we had seen them plunge diving before, we had never seen them doing it in a large group. This was some distance from the ship (300mm). Maybe as many as 50 birds would circle high over the water:

    One of the birds would make a dive:



    This seemed to trigger about half of the remaining group to dive, nearly all at once:





    This activity was repeated again and again. How did they avoid spearing each other?:eek: :eek: 

    Bob & Nan
  2. Cool looking birds for sure
  3. Bolts


    May 7, 2007
    Tampa, Florida
    that's awesome!
  4. Wow. Looks like a squadron of dive bombers.
  5. This is very normal behaviour for the Gannets around the UK.

    It happens when a shoal of small fish rise to the surface, which then turns into a feeding frenzy. Normally the fish are driven upwards by predators.

    Bob F.
  6. Gale


    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    What a sight Bob
    Nice landscapes there
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