Jordan Lake. Every winter I have come to expect to see 4 to 6 American white pelicans here on the lake. They showed up a couple of days ago and I finally got to see them yesterday. I became fascinated that in their flight sequences, when they are not beating their wings, and simply soaring … they often all do the soar pretty much at the same time. A serene flight.

Jordan Lake. Oh my! I was watching bald eagles this morning and as the fog lifted I suddenly realized there was a rather large white mass of birds out on the lake. They were American white pelicans. I see a few here most winters December – January. I have never seen this many before. One of the birders who had a spotting scope counted them and there were 40. They are way off their normal migration course. Neat to see!

American White Pelicans

A feeding frenzy erupted at the lake yesterday.
It was started by 4 white pelicans – yes, pelicans, you know, those warm climate birds…
that most likely for weather related reasons were at Jordan Lake.
White pelicans don’t do the spectacular fishing dives that the brown pelicans do.
Nope.  The white pelicans fish cooperatively using their feet and bodies to push fish into a tight mass.
Then the pelicans feast.  AND, the bald eagles saw a buffet open up on the lake.
Without hesitation…after all, they are Eagles… the bald eagles started fishing in the middle of the congregation.
So did the great blue herons, the cormorants, the gulls and the terns.
There were several fights between eagles.
For more than 45 minutes I watched, photographed and enjoyed.  I hope you do too.
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Jordan Lake surprised me again today.
I had been counting bald eagles for the quarterly eagle count when a large bird of another sort flew past.
It was a white pelican. I see these occasionally at Mattamuskeet or at the ocean shore but not here at Jordan Lake.
What a wonderful sight on a crisp autumn morning.

pelican Jordan

WALK2656 white pelican pair flight2014

The American white pelican is noted to be uncommon on the coast of North Carolina.
It was wonderful to see a flight of 13 of these huge birds; here I have shown 2 of the formation.