Thursday, August 12, 2010

American White Pelicans

White Pelicans have one of the largest wingspans of any North American bird at nine feet long. They need large strong wings to carry them airbourne as Pelicans can grow up to 5' tall and an average weight of 16 pounds ... I have read that some Pelicans may weigh as much as 30 pounds.

(Above and Below, 8-7-10, Mississippi River) American White Pelicans flying in a synchronized pattern.

Pelicans in flight are a majestic sight. They seem to fly in a synchronized pattern as each bird takes its cue from the one in front of it, flapping or gliding in unison. Although the pictures aren't the best in quality, they will show pairs of Pelicans in synchronized flight. It is a beautiful sight when they do this larger flocks.

American White Pelicans flying in unison (Horicon Marsh Wildlife Refuge, WI, 5-29-10)

Did you take yesterday's Pelican Challenge (Below)? Which one is not like the others?
My answers:
1. There is a Double-crested-Comorant tucked in between the Pelicans in the lower left of the photo - about a third of the way in from the left edge of the pic.
2. In the Center Top of the photo, there is one Pelican facing the opposite direction with its bill pointing left (and another one just below the obvious one - with the middle of its bill hidden behind the Pelican in front of it) , instead of the others pointing their bills to the right. Rebels!
3. About one fifth of the way in from the middle of the left edge of the photo, there is one Pelican facing directly front and you can only see its pink top bill, and not the yellow bottom bill as all the others.

Can you tell I'm a teacher?


Chesney said...

The top three images are wonderful...I love how the pelicans are "in synch"! I guess I really haven't seen then flying together...very cool!

~Val said...

I missed the rebel pelicans...had my eye on other differences that weren't really differences - but I DID spot the cormorant! :-)