MEETING THE AUSTRALIAN PELICANS

It was an early morning at the beach in Monkey Mia (Western Australia) 

For the first time in my life, I was standing really close to a pelican. At this time I realized how big these Australian pelicans are! Did you know that they can grow up to 1,8 meters (around 6 feet)? And the wingspan can reach 3 meters (10 feet)! Bigger than me; I’m impressed!!

Monkey Mia (1)
Pelican pouches can hold 13 liters of water.

I’m also fascinated by their beaks. They are so huge! I’m wondering how it feels like touching them. The thing I can tell you is that the Pelicans have the longest beak of any bird in the world. The beak is sensitive to vibrations which help to catch fishes. They also breathe through their beaks because they don’t have nostrils.

I only have seen one species of pelicans in Australia, the Australian Pelican obviously, but there actually are eight species of pelicans in the world. They usually live on the coasts, along lakes and rivers.

IMG_4582
Pelican can live between 15 and 25 years in the wild (up to 40 in animal sanctuaries).

When we were living in Berri (South Australia), we enjoyed hanging out along the Murray River or at the Barmera Lake, just looking at the pelicans… When they flew together, that’s just like magic! It looks sooo smooth when they are gliding over the water!

Did you know that the Pelicans are able to fly 600 km a day and on a height of over 3000 meters (10 000 feet)? Most amazing way to travel all around Australia, don’t you think?

Andy Barret @cosmicdubwarriortraveller (2)
Pelicans typically travel and hunt in flocks. They eat around 1,8 kg (4 pounds) fishes a day.

The weight of a pelican is around 9 kg (19 pounds), it’s about 250 times as heavy as a light bulb. Does it sound heavy?

Where did Pelicans cross your way during your travels? Tell us about it! Share your story!

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Amandine & Adrian

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