Bird rarely seen in North Carolina photographed flying on Ocracoke Island

OCRACOKE, N.C. (WTVD) -- A bird rarely seen in North Carolina was photographed flying in the outer Banks this week.

Cape Hatteras National Seashore Park Biologist B. Ranelli snapped a picture of a masked booby on Ocracoke Island.

The masked booby is a large seabird that is usually found in the tropical open ocean--like the Caribbean and Galapagos islands.

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Cape Hatteras National Seashore said it's likely this particular bird ended up in Ocracoke thanks to Tropical Storm Alex. The storm came up through the Gulf of Mexico, across Florida and out off the North Carolina coast.

Masked boobies eat fish and squid that they hunt by divebombing into the ocean to snatch them up.

The birds themselves are not scarce. They are just not normally found this far north of their habitat.

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