The Cory’s Shearwater – “the wacka wacka bird”

If I get asked one question more than any other, I’d say it’s one connected with birds! And one bird in particular. I’ve heard them called “those noisy birds”, or even the “wacka wacka” birds, after the typical noise they make. So, the above video is of Calonectris diomedea, or Cory’s Shearwater, with lovely photos and information about the birds: for their call, just click HERE. The birds are found in the Mediterranean and the Atlantic, and we have the Atlantic ones. They breed in cliffs, with the main colonies in Madeira and the Azores, and migrate in late summer-autumn north and west into the Atlantic, sometimes reaching the UK and Ireland. Their return in the late spring means summer is almost back, and their distinctive call, behind the “wacka wacka” nickname, is wonderful to hear.


  1. A very interesting video showing superb photography of these lovely birds.

  2. Thank you for this wonderful link & the information. My husband and I have often wondered what these birds were called, the first time we heard a pair we thought they sounded like dolphins. Only 2weeks until we return, this subject usually comes up so now we have the answer, thanks. 🙂

  3. I saw this about the birds just before we came out for 2 weeks.
    I saw loads of them on a dolphin trip and the guide was astounded that I new what they were.
    Thankyou Janet the video is amazing and I love the music x

  4. We were sat on our balcony in Los Gigantes after an evening out & a few beverages, just 3weeks ago listening to a pair of those birds. Amazing, haunting, thought it was too many drinks. In 2weeks we’ve seen the Cory Sheerwater & pilot whales, wonderful expeiences. Amazing.

  5. Hearing the Cory’s loud and clear in the undisturbed mountain behind Bocacangreco, amazing sound! Still haven’t seen any yet.

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