GREAT WHITE PELICAN

GREAT WHITE PELICAN (Pelecanus onocrotalus)
The Great White Pelican is very similar to the American White pelican, but it is a bird of the Old World and breeds mainly in Africa. It breeds in colonies, and the largest African colony is located at Lake Rukwa in Tanzania. It has an orange, very large specialized bill, which includes an extensible pouch to scoop up fish and filter out water. The pouch is not for carrying food, contrary to popular belief.

Sexes are similar. In spite of its large size ā€“ 3-meter (10 ft.) wingspan – it can soar on favorable winds with great ease. These birds fly in groups, either in line or ā€˜Vā€™ formations. Great white pelicans will cooperate when hunting small fish in shallow water, bringing the fish closer together to scoop them up.

Great white pelicans - Tanzania, Jan. 2018
Great white pelicans – Tanzania, Jan. 2018

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