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Old Jun 15, 2007, 9:57 PM   #11
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Location: Chama, New Mexico
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snostorm wrote:
Hi Roger,

Great scenery, terrific pelican shots. Did you switch to a wide angle to get the scenic shot, or just use the 50mm end of the Bigma?

Although I know that they move through this general area, I've never seen one around here. Coincidentally, one of our local wildlife rescue and rehab Vets was telling me how she just recently released one that was found on the shoreline in downtown Chicago with some kind of illness last summer. He had recovered pretty well by fall, but not enough to survive the migration, so she kept him over the winter until she was notified that the pelicans had returned to their nesting area up north of here. She released him in Wisconsin in a remote area only accessible by air boat. She said that he probably had gotten blown off course in a storm, and was too weakened by the illness to fight the wind. I saw the video of the release, and there were hundreds of them up there. It was pretty impressive when they were getting close with the boat and most of the flock of big white birds took off, circled around, and came right back to their nests.

On a more somber note, there was a story that made its way around the Net a few months ago about a pelican IIRC it was in London. In the middle of the day, surrounded by citizens and tourists, it hopped over and snatched one of the numerous pigeons that were milling around, then just sat there for quite a while with the pigeon sitting in its bill. The pelican would open its mouth a bit, and you could see the pigeon looking around. A number of people got shots of this. Then all of a sudden, the pelican tossed his head back and swallowed the pigeon in one gulp -- to the horror of everyone who was watching! Oh well, that's nature . . . I'd feel bad about it if it wasn't a pigeon -- they're so overpopulated in this area that they call them sky rats , and the City of Chicago even instituted a program where they released Peregrine Falcons in the city to try to control their population. This ploy didn't work as the falcons took off for the suburbs where there's a lot more open area.:-)

Very cool stuff seeing more about these big guys and their natural habitat.

I used my Sigma 10-20 for the wide shot.

You bring up a good poing. I have noticed they are not near as skittish with boats as they are with cars and then especially skittish with someone out of the car. Thanks for commenting and for looking.


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