A pod of American white pelicans flew into an Eagarville pond on Monday, March 20. There were nearly 50 of the large, graceful birds who appeared to enjoy themselves while grabbing dinner. The pod were still at the pond at the time of publication.
Donna Prevedell and two of her granddaughters caught a glimpse of the well-traveled birds’ arrival. “They obliged by swimming past several times in their synchronized fishing formation,” Prevedell said. “We found it fascinating.”
The birds, which have bright orange bills and white feathers, are likely on their way to their summer nesting areas after spending the winter in the south. American white pelicans breed in the upper Midwest of the United States and central Canada and spend winters in the Gulf, California, and Mexico.
As Prevedell and her granddaughters witnessed, the American white pelicans have a strategic and elegant hunting habit that makes them fun to watch. Instead of plunging into the water for prey, white pelicans catch their prey by forming an ever-tightening circle around them and synchronously dipping their beaks in the water to gather the corralled fish.
“Couldn’t believe they are here in Eagarville,” Kay Houser commented. “Love watching them.”