Baby Pelican Rescue

After hearing reports from boaters about a baby pelican seen on the ground at Bird key island without parents, Pelican Harbor Seabird Station was dispatched to check it out while also conducting a bird count survey. On these trips, we are able to take note of the amount of each species in a certain area, as well as the amount of nests and juveniles. These surveys tell us the population size and the status of many native species.

While slowly boating around the island, we took count of many Magnificent Frigatebirds, Brown pelicans, Double-crested Cormorants and Anhinga’s, as well as a few Great Blue Herons and Cattle Egrets.
On the southeast side of the island, we spotted the baby pelican’s white downy coat from the water and proceeded to dock the skipper. On the island we saw the young pelican and approached him to find a very broken wing. Staff member Yaritza and intern Michelle cornered the baby pelican and brought him back to the boat.

Intern Michelle holding baby for exam

After the boat trip back to the station, we were able to assess the pelican. The pelican was less than one month old and had obvious trauma wounds from falling from the nest.