Sunday, April 6, 2008


Pelican is the common name for the large aquatic birds of the family Pelecanidae, which reach 180 cm (72 in) in length. They have long necks, short tails, long, broad wings, and huge with deeply expansible skin pouches in the lower mandible; the upper mandible serves as a lid for covering the pouch. Widely distributed, predominantly over the warmer regions of the world, pelicans are strong fliers and swimmers, feeding on fish and crustaceans captured by diving into the water from the air or while swimming on the surface. They are sociable animals, often nesting in colonies of up to several thousand birds. Females produce two to three plain, bluish or yellowish eggs, although usually only one eggs survives the 30 to 42 day incubation period. The young are born naked, and plumage appears after 8 to 14 days. Sexual maturity after the third of fourth year.

The brown pelican dives from a great height, striking the water with an enormous impact. The bird is approximately 130 cm (150 in). It is dive by air pockets that line fresh beneath its breast.

The old World white pelican of southeastern Europe, Asia, and Africa is found near lakes, marshes, and streams. It is approximately 170 cm (67 in) long. In flight, a line of pelicans may move as choreographed dancers, beating their wings, gliding, and dipping in unison. Pelican also hunt cooperatively.

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