Can You Eat a Cormorant?

Yes, you can eat a cormorant. However, these birds are not considered a species that can be hunted. This is mainly because they have a fishy diet and are not very good for humans to eat. It is also difficult to pluck them, and they have tough meat.

These large birds can be eaten; however, people avoid eating them due to various reasons. Now that we know humans don’t eat cormorants. Let’s find out what animals can eat cormorants. Let’s also see what cormorants like to consume themselves.

Is Cormorant a Duck or a Bird?

If you’re wondering whether cormorants are ducks or birds, here is the answer to your question! Cormorants are medium-to-large birds with mostly dark feathers. These birds have webbing on their toes and have thin, long bills.

Can You Eat Cormorants?

In older times, cormorants were animals that were commonly eaten. It was eaten in feasts and was also presented as a gift from a hunter to his members.

Now, in modern times, some people on the northwest coast have started avoiding eating cormorant meat due to many reasons.

These cormorants have very tough meat and plucking their feathers off is a very difficult and time-consuming task on its own. Moreover, it is unhealthy to eat animals with diets that only consist of fish (source).

What Does Cormorant Taste Like?

If people in the olden times would eat cormorant meat, have you wondered what it tastes like? We may not have an exact answer for you, but we can check out what it tastes like by some other people’s opinions!


Given that it mostly eats fish, you might imagine it tasting like fish. However, some people say it tastes like chicken!

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Some believe it tastes like rotten fish, whereas others believe it simply tastes like regular fish! 

Are Eating Cormorants Good for Health?

In simple words, cormorants may not be the healthiest meal to have. Eating fish is a very nutritious diet but is it healthy to eat animals that only consume fish?

The answer is no. That is because, nowadays, due to water pollution, fish take in many harmful chemicals, which later build up mercury and PCBs in their bodies. What these do to humans is very dangerous.

High levels of mercury and PCBs can also harm the brain and our nervous system! So, whether it is a double-crested cormorant or a regular cormorant, you shouldn’t eat it even though people used to back in the day.

Can You Eat Cormorant Eggs?

According to the news journal, you can eat cormorant eggs. This journal reported that human activity is one of the threats to cormorant life.

This journal revealed that North Americans, mostly from coastal areas, love to eat cormorant eggs (source).

Before native Americans, early European settlers also took their eggs for food and shot many other sea animals for meat.

However, today, people don’t eat cormorant meat or cormorant eggs due to the high levels of DDT found in cormorant egg shells (source).

Do Sharks Eat Cormorants?

Cormorants might seem like huge birds that any land animal can’t eat. Well, that is the case when it comes to land animals. Sharks eat these huge birds!

These birds are eaten by a specific kind of shark that is the tiger shark. Since cormorants usually live where their food is found, tiger sharks have also been found in those specific areas.

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However, just like dolphins, sea snakes, dugongs, and even some sea turtles, cormorants need to stay safe from sharks (source).


What do Cormorants Eat?

Cormorants are coastal birds that live in colonies around the seashore. This is why their diet consists exclusively of sea animals, specifically fish. These birds are opportunistic predators, meaning they have a wide range of aquatic habitats.

Cormorants normally consume many different species of fish, even though their diets may depend on the seasonal availability of fish.

These fish include cunners, winter flounders, pollocks, sculpins, rock gunnels, and many other such fish that come under the category of flatfishes. They feed on other sea animals: capelins, sand lances, and even small crabs.

There is a great possibility that these other sea animals are prey that has been eaten by the fish that cormorants have consumed. They also eat frogs and insects, such as dragonfly nymphs and other insect larvae.

Can you Eat Cormorant Meat?

Yes, you can eat cormorant meat. However, it has been avoided by many people who live in the northwest coastal areas. That is because it is difficult to pluck the bird and consume its meat. After all, it is so tough.

Are Cormorants Carnivores?

Cormorants are carnivorous animals and are very impressive carnivore hunters because they can dive as deep as the fish they eat. Cormorants eat not only fish but also a variety of insects and frogs.

Do Cormorants Swallow Fish Whole?

Yes, cormorants swallow fish whole! These birds can swallow large fish and those that are difficult to handle on the shore. What they do is, toss the fish into the air, catch it, and swallow the fish whole!

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Do Cormorants Carry any Diseases?

Just like many other big wild birds, cormorants also carry some diseases. One of the most common types of disease these birds carry is the “virulent avian paramyxovirus serotype 1.” Double-crested cormorants usually carry this disease (source).


Now that we know that we can eat cormorants but should not eat them due to their harmful effect on our human health and how difficult it is to cook them and tear their meat apart.

We also know a lot more about these huge birds living near the seashore, where they can find food. Many people believe that its meat tastes like chicken; however, some say that due to its diet, it should taste just like fish.

If you ever get the opportunity to taste a cormorant, would you like to do it? I hope all your questions regarding cormorants have been answered in this article and that every question has been answered for you.

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