Sunday, 20 February 2011



Dorris with pink Gula April 2010 DSC_0172

We have three Pink-Backed Pelicans at the Park, two males and one female – Horace, Maurice and Doris!  We would love to source another female so there is a balanced ratio of males to females but this type of Pelican is hard to find surplus stocks of in the UK.Marian_A Splashing Time @ 20%  

Fun Facts:

Scientific name:  Pelecanus rufescens

Continent: Africa, Asia

Diet:  Fish, frogs, insects

Conservation status:  Least concern

Pink-Backed Pelicans have a wide distribution , ranging from central Africa to Arabia and the Island of Madagascar. They feed on a variety of aquatic invertebrates, but their main diet is fish.

Normally found fishing in groups, they form a line around a shoal of fish and simultaneously plunge their heads into the water, this scares and confuses the fish giving the pelicans time to scoop up as many as possible in their huge pouch before resurfacing.

In spring and early summer the pelicans pair up and build a large nest of sticks, two or three eggs are laid and incubation takes around thirty days.  Pelican chicks are ravenous feeders, plunging their heads into the open bill of the parent bird and gulping down semi digested, regurgitated fish.

Although Pink-Backed Pelicans are currently not endangered, human disturbance and loss of habitat are a real threat to the future preservation of this species. 

Did you know?  A Pink-Backed Pelican can hold 8 litres of water in its pouch

Did you know?  Pink- Backs are one of the smallest of the eight species of Pelican.

Did you know?  Birds cannot sweat, in order for the Pink- Backed Pelican to cool down, it opens its beak and flaps the large pouch attached to the lower mandible.

Pelican in soft morning light DSC_0070

No comments:

Post a Comment