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Thursday, March 02, 2006

Unusual bird sightings

I was just browsing eBird, a joint project of the Audubon Society and Cornell Lab of Ornithology. According to the about page, eBird is a user contributed database, and:

[...] the cumulative eBird database is used by birdwatchers, scientists, and conservationists who want to know more about the distributions and movement patterns of birds across the continent.

My jaw about hit the floor when I saw on eBird that someone spotted an American White Pelican right here in Sangamon County, Illinois, last October. The American White Pelican is big. It's huge. Almost gigantic. And, not usually found around these parts.

What makes this all the more jaw dropping is that about the same time, I thought I saw an American White Pelican, for just a moment.

I'll make this fast, instead of going through my various phases of shock and speechlessness. Turns out what I actually saw was a large white seagull perched high atop one of those surveillance camera casings. You had to be there to understand how I could possibly process this seagull camera thing as a pelican. Fortunately, my daughter was with me and she saw the same thing I did.

The American White Pelican is unmistakable from any other bird in the U.S.

Posted by Marie at March 2, 2006 12:23 AM


I've seen a white pelican only once, in Cape May, NJ.

Posted by: Kem White at March 2, 2006 11:32 AM