We Got the White

Fresh off a huge win for the Green Bay Packers over American’s team the Dallas Cowboys.  This was one of those strange games where it didn’t really bother me who won the game.  I have a lot of respect for Aaron Rogers both in the way he plays the game and probably more important how he handles himself on the field – calm cool and just goes about the business of winning even when the chips are stacked against.  On the other side I have similar respect for Tony Romo.  A fine product out of Eastern Illinois, but he was on the sidelines today watching his rookie replacement Dak Prescott.  Dak has impressed me as well, especially the way he has taken over the reins since Romo’s injury.  With admiration for elements of both teams I have to look for the negatives to determine my favored side.  Front and center Dez Bryant.  ‘Nuff said, go Pack!

Decided to catch a bit of the Steelers vs Chiefs game and since I cannot just sit and watch a game (what a waste of time), figured it would be a good time to pop another post off of the draft queue.  Since I went with the Brown Pelicans in the last post, figured it was only fair to give a little love to their white counterparts.
White Pelican Shot on Texas Birding Trip - November 2013

Unlike the Brown Pelicans in the Texas region, American White Pelicans are not year round inhabitants.  They migrate down from the colder regions to bask in the sun like the rest of us heat seekers.  Thanks to Robert who was giving birding talks at the South Padre Island Birding and Nature Center, Linda and I now know an interesting fact.  White Pelicans are the largest birds in the region … when they are down there.  When they migrate back, the Brown Pelican inherits the top of the size chart.  In jest, that tidbit became our mantra for the rest of the trip repeated at every sighting of the Pelican.  This was generally prompted by Linda who basically doubled her bird knowledge thanks to that informative comment from the local bird authority.   If we had more time we might have taken Robert up on one of his birding talks – seemed like he was up on his aviary facts and the details on what all the local restaurants were doing for New Year’s.

White Pelican Shot on Texas Birding Trip - November 2013

Since the Whites are pretty common here in the Midwest I didn’t spend a lot of time getting new shots in the tin – just took a few that I thought were interesting.  Wish I could tell you where we took these, but my memory is failing me at the moment – these were taken back in November 2013.  My guess is somewhere in the Galveston area or possibly off the shore in the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge.  That is the downsize of having such a backed up photo queue and an aging brain.

White Pelican Shot on Texas Birding Trip - November 2013

Before I let you go, it might be worth mentioning that neither one of these two White Pelicans were breeding – neither one are sporting the large knob that protrudes off the top of their bill (about 2/3rds the way down) signifying they are a breeding adult.  Admittedly a crappy picture, but you can see what it looks like in a previous post (link here).  Also note, the more dusky one in the back is likely a juvenile.

Just a quick post today folks, catch you again real soon.

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2 thoughts on “We Got the White”

  1. Hmm, that little comment about Linda is likely to haunt you, my friend.

    A fact-filled post, unlike the last post of Brown Pelicans. I really like the second picture a LOT. Pop the colors and add a bit of contrast and a spotlight effect on the Pelican and it’s a county fair winner!

    In the process of researching facts to embellish the FACT-LESS post on Brown Pelicans, I read that White Pelicans, like most pelicans, do not dive to stun and catch fish but rather cooperatively fish from the surface, scooping up corralled fish. I thought that was interesting.

    Anyway, congrats–keep that second pic handy for fair competition time!

    Ron

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  2. I’m sure as punishment she will double up her bird entries in this year’s UB competition. I will say it definitely stuck because she kept referencing every Spoonbill sighting from that point on as a Flamingo just to rub it in. I need to go back and check on that second image. It doesn’t carry our premium logo so a little concerned there is something about it that doesn’t show up in the reduced version. It may be okay and I just figured my previous Pelican pictures were better – will keep it in mind for the competitions this year.

    I was actually asked the very same question by a fellow birder at South Padre Island a few months back. He was commenting that he never sees the Whites diving like the Browns. I relayed that they were surface fishers and that the large knob on their bills cause too much friction if they were to dive like the Browns causing their heads to be ripped clean off their necks like a combine to corn stalks. It is possible I might have gotten my facts a bit off.

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