The great cormorant is in danger. The population of this glossy, black bird has dwindled from more than 250 pairs to 80 since 1992. Thugs are taking cormorant chicks from their nests and driving away the adults. According to Brad Allen, a wildlife biologist for the state of Maine,
"They're like thugs. They're like gang members. They go to these offshore islands where all these seabirds are and the birds are easy picking."
Who are these thugs? American bald eagles.
The AP reports on this unpleasantness . Don't worry though; the AP has a good idea of who is really at fault. The AP says "perhaps" the eagles have less fish to eat - so they are turning to cormorants. And of course it goes without saying who is to blame for less fish. (Man, of course.)
But really don't worry. If you read into the AP story deep enough, you find that those dwindling numbers of cormorants are only in Maine, the southern-most point of their range. In fact, the great cormorants are "widespread" from Europe to eastern Canada.