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|Gannets are seabirds comprising the genus Morus, in the family Sulidae, closely related to boobies. "Gannet" is derived from Old English ganot "strong or masculine", ultimately from the same Old Germanic root as "gander". Morus is derived from Ancient Greek moros, "foolish", due to the lack of fear shown by breeding gannets and boobies allowing them to be easily killed.|
The gannets are large white birds with yellowish heads; black-tipped wings; and long bills. Northern gannets are the largest seabirds in the North Atlantic, having a wingspan of up to 2 metres (6.6 ft). The other two species occur in the temperate seas around southern Africa, southern Australia and New Zealand.
Gannets hunt fish by diving into the sea from a height and pursuing their prey underwater. Gannets have a number of adaptations which enable them to do this:
no external nostrils, they are located inside the mouth instead;
air sacs in the face and chest under the skin which act like bubble wrapping, cushioning the impact with the water;
positioning of the eyes far enough forward on the face for binocular vision, allowing them to judge distances accurately.
Gannets can dive from a height of 30 metres (98 ft), achieving speeds of 100 kilometres per hour (62 mph) as they strike the water, enabling them to catch fish much deeper than most airborne birds.
The gannet's supposed capacity for eating large quantities of fish has led to "gannet" becoming a description of somebody with a voracious appetite.
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- [2017-12-13 23:48]
Hi Alan,magnificent in flight capture of this beautiful gannet,the wings position is a show,so large and big,and the quality of sharpness is great despite the fast mouvement. Have a nice day and thanks,Luciano
Another super capture of the Gannet in flight. Wonderful timing!!