Tuesday, November 17, 2009

7D: White Pelicans at LSU



Adjoining Louisiana State University are several small man-made lakes and one larger lake, University Lake. Apparently these lakes were dredged from swampland many years ago. University Lake has a nice walking path – about 4 or 5 miles around, I think. University Lake is a also good place to try new photo gear. One of my favorite photos was taken here. I finally got a chance to try the 7D with the 15-85mm at the lake and got the shot above plus a few ducks. Then the pelicans returned.

White Pelicans are sometimes seen during the late fall in these lakes. Apparently the LSU lakes are a convenient stop-over on the migratory path from Canada to South America.

The White Pelican (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos) is a large bird some four to 6 feet tall with a wing span up to nine feet. Although predominately white, their wing tips are black and their bill is orange.

These large birds are graceful in flight but, unlike the Brown Pelican, do not dive for food. Instead of diving, White Pelicans work together to gather fish while swimming. Watching a flock of White Pelicans swimming, it is easy to imagine that they are herding fish! Each bird is said to need about four pounds of fish daily.

White Pelicans are protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty of 1972.

No comments: