This morning at Summer Leys LNR in Northamptonshire I had a very pleasant surprise, perhaps a first, in the form of a Cormorant variant possibly a Phalacrocorax carbo sinensis - considered by many to be an invasive alien Chinese Cormorant to Europe.
All are members of the Great Cormorant family and hybridisation has taken place widely to the point that it is virtually impossible to identify the two strains, this bird is certainly visually different to the birds that I see locally in the UK.
My understanding is that sinensis have been in Europe for three or four hundred years, there is much debate about how and where they first arrived in Europe.
In the United Kingdom they tend to favour the eastern side of the country although in relatively small numbers.
You just never know whats on the menu when you go out for a bit of birding on a Sunday morning.
A friend of mine Graham Barker produced a small video of our visit as per the link below.