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Animals ShowcaseAmerican White Pelicans

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Ceropegia
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American White Pelicans

Post by Ceropegia »

For many years, I have wanted to see white pelicans up close. The only time I had ever seen any, they were mere specks in a flock flying so high overhead I couldn't tell what they were. By significantly enlarging a photo I had taken, I could see barely make out their unmistakeable beaks. On several occasions over the years I had driven the 60 or so miles to the Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge when I heard some were wintering there, but never managed to locate any. Then, this spring, a friend of mine who lives a couple of miles from me on the Coosa River showed me some photos he had taken of a migrating flock that had stopped offshore from his property. I told him how envious I was. So on subsequent days he would call me when the pelicans had showed up again. I was usually too busy or it was too late for me to get there. Finally one miserably cold rainy day I was able to get to the river and find a spot to look for some. First I only saw a few across the river, but gradually more and more arrived until a couple hundred had assembled. Then to my great good fortune, they started across the river to my side, fairly near to me, reached the shore, assembled in a tight mass, swam back out a short way, turned as one, and began driving fish back to the shore and had a feast. Quite a remarkable thing to see.
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Psjunkie
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Post by Psjunkie »

Looks like you got quite the show...well done

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minniev
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Post by minniev »

I love all of these, and most especially the second one. I chase the migratory white pellies that visit us every winter. Seldom do I find a way to get as close as you did even with my longest lens. They mostly set up on a little island in the reservoir that would mean getting a boat. Sometimes a group will fish near shore and I'm so excited to find them. I'm glad you got to see and photograph them, they are my favorite birds! I love how they form themselves into rows.
"God gave me photography so that I could pray with my eyes" - Dewitt Jones

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PietFrancke
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Post by PietFrancke »

Wow! Wonderful shots and story. The abstract patterns those birds and beaks make are pretty incredible and a thing all by itself, I love those birds! Wow!!! Great job with the "try and try again" - way to go not giving up!!

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