Common Name: Northern Gannet
Scientific Name: Morus bassanus
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Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Pelecaniformes
Family: Sulidae
Genius: Morus
Species:  M. bassanus

 

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Morus bassanus is one of the most common, but not heard of type of birds. Its common name is the Northern Gannet. The Morus/Sula has a wonderful personality.

 

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Morus bassanus size and coloration according to “bayscience.com” is about 35 to 40 inches long, with a wingspan of 65 to 71 inches. Adults weigh about 104 ounces. The adult has a white head, body, tail, and inner wings with a yellowish wash on head and black outer wings.  It has a large, gray, pointed bill, gray legs and feet.  The young are brownish.

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Morus bassanus loves to eat small fish.  They hunt for their food in an interesting way; they put their wings back and dive straight in the water about 50mph. Once they have a fish they dive right back out and go back home to feed their offspring. Gannets dive straight down into the water to get their food from the tall cliffs they live on.

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Gannets have adapted to living on cliffs/mountains or also flat grounds by the shoreline.  If these birds are not breeding, some of them fly over the ocean. The Gannets habitat is around the pacific and any other oceans.

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Its population has increased, but predators still can have an effect. One of its main predators is the Bald Eagle.  The Northern Gannet has these two rare predators that are sharks and seals and the predators for the eggs are Red Foxes and Herring Gulls.

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Morus bassanus/Sula bassanus live life in a very interesting way.  They are important to us because some people are lucky to be able to see a Gannet. They have many characteristics/personality, habitats, feeding habits that all display they’re strength of living life.

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Author: Jasmine G.
Published: 3/2010

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Photo Credit: http://stlucieaudubon.org/images/BirdPhotos/NorthernGannet2.jpg