Saturday, July 17, 2010

Unusual Sighting at the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge



White pelicans are NOT a bird we normally see in this area!

19 comments:

Out walking the dog said...

Very cool sighting.

will said...

why are the here? heat? transplanted from GOM? bizarre!

Baydog said...

My wife and I want to come back as pelicans one day. Even if for only one day. Is that too much to ask?

Carol Anne said...

Actually, most of the pelicans you see, even the white ones, are officially Brown Pelicans. The early Spanish and French explorers along the Gulf Coast saw juveniles, whose plumage is brown. So even though the adult pelicans are white, the name of the species is Brown Pelicans.

We get a lot of Brown Pelicans at Elephant Butte, but we've never seen any at Heron -- it's probably too far north.

If you're seeing pelicans in Jamaica Bay, when you haven't seen them there before, it's good news/bad news. The good news is that generally warmer temperatures will allow these magnificent birds to live farther north than they have previously. The bad news is the the southern boundary of where they can live is also probably moving north.

bonnie said...

There was just this one, a fluke that the birders are very excited about it. One of my birding friends said it was probably just blown off-course.

O Docker said...

Climate. Shmimate.

It's just one dopey pelican, right? Does that look like a particularly smart bird to you?

I'll bet he was following 95 north, missed the turn for the Chesapeake, and is now too embarrassed to ask directions.

Those geese are laughing their butts off.

Baydog said...

I think he got confused when he realized that 95 goes through Philadelphia, but also is, in fact, the NJ Turnpike. Who was the Einstein that decided that?

Ploffskin pluffskin pelican jee
we think no bird so happy as we
Pluffskin ploffskin pelican jill
we think so then and we thought so still.

Sorry. I couldn't resist

bonnie said...

Lovely lovely Lear!

After last week's ugliness (which, fingers crossed & knocking wood, seems to have ended - sometimes you really do need to just give people the last word) I am delighted to have some good air-freshening silliness here.

BTW my new theory is that this flock of Canada geese, residing, as they do, one mile from JFK International Airport, have hired this exotic visitor to ensure that a constant stream of observant bird-lovers are watching over the area!

btw Steve the Paddling Chef tells me that when he was younger, a family friend who hunted gave his family a Canada goose they'd shot. He said it was the worst thing he'd ever tasted. Fishy. Think that answers that question I'd asked about whether there was a better use for 400 dead geese than landfill.

michael b said...

The Pelican is a very delicate bird and was an early victim of DDT poisoning. Here on the Northwest coast the normal migration of pelicans was once far to the north in Canada in the summer and back to California and Mexico in the winter. But in the half century plus that I've been witness to, there were only the occasional freak sightings of these birds. In fact as a young naturalist, I'd never seen one until I visited South Carolina.
The're coming back to the Oregon and Washington coast in remarkable numbers today, which can only be good, right?

Pat said...

Maybe this is a particularly smart pelican who knows that the upper Gulf Coast still isn't a healthy place to be. Fill his belly can the pelican with east coast fish!

corey said...

@Sheepshead Bites: Asking for and getting permission to use my photos would be the right thing to do. You have a nice site but taking four photos and reposting them without permission is not fair use.

I appreciate the link and all but, please, moving forward, ask permission and wait for me to grant it before using my work.

@Carol Anne: Actually, there are two species of pelicans and this one is an American White Pelican. Adult Brown Pelicans are brown. Just pick up a field guide and look...

corey said...

Oops. The first part of my previous comment was meant for another blog, obviously... :)

bonnie said...

Hi Corey -

I didn't know about the Sheepshead Bites article either - I don't mind the use of mine but then I was just dumb-lucky enough to stumble across the pelican while out kayaking - you clearly put more work into getting yours (which are beautiful btw). And you're right, it is polite to ask permission.

However, I don't think the Sheepshead Bites bloggers are regular readers here & if you want them to read your comment, I'd suggest posting at their blog.

corey said...

@bonnie: I did comment over there as well...and didn't mean to put the comment to them on your blog (one should never start commenting on blogs before morning coffee).

And nice pics, by the way. You must get some great looks at birds from a kayak!

bonnie said...

Oh, it's fantastic. As I said, I'm not a birder, but I have learned many of the birds of the bay since I moved my kayaks out there. I love watching them come & go over the days & seasons. I do have a paddling friend who IS a birder (I joke that she produces snowy owls upon request - only it's not really a joke, she did just that once during a winter paddle at Jones Beach, too cool) & I really enjoy paddling with her, she see things I would never notice & can tell one "peep" from another & it's always fascinating to go with her & get that birder's view.

And oops, you must have been typing your "oops" at the same time I was typing my suggestion.

I'm not enjoying this comment moderation business. Sorry it has to be this way.

Lisanne! said...

Corey, Sheepshead Bites did provide attribution and links back to the original sources. People use my photos without even attribution occasionally, that sort of thing should be more of a concern.

Ned liked your site, and gave it some promotion. I think that's a very fair trade off as Sheepshead Bites has thousands of regular readers.

bonnie said...

Well, it's a nicety that's frequently overlooked, but it is polite to ask. I don't mind & am actually flattered when people use my pictures - but as I said, I think Corey put much more care into his pictures than I did into mine, so it makes sense that he's more protective of his.

Gothamist asked! I was impressed.

bonnie said...

ps - I liked the Sheepshead Bites article & I think it's pretty funny that both Ned and Gothamist took my pelican post & turned it into much more interesting pelican posts.

That's why I wouldn't say this blog is much more than a "D list" blog!

:)

Anonymous said...

unbelieveable! good to see- I used to work @ that wildlife refuge and NEVER saw anything like that!!