Diving For Dinner

Yesterday there were a few brown pelicans fishing in the salt marsh in water that, due to low tide, was more shallow than they’re accustomed to. The pelicans are able to alter their fishing style so that instead of the usual almost vertical dive from above, they glide along in the water and utilize kind of a hop and dive technique.

That worked out fine for this big guy here who scored himself a nice fish that quickly went from being trapped in that huge pouch to down the gullet.

Pelican Diving For Dinner

Pelican Diving For Dinner

Pelican Diving For Dinner

Pelican Diving For Dinner

Pelican Diving For Dinner

Pelican Diving For Dinner

24 thoughts on “Diving For Dinner

  1. Great photos, I wonder do the pelicans hang out at the salt marsh all winter and then go back to the ocean when it gets warmer, that would happen when I lived in Florida, they would all congregate in the canals in the winter and then take off and go back to the ocean when it got warmer. These pelicans you have pictures are look a bit different, with their beautiful colors, but no matter what color they are I love them…thanks Phil

    • We can usually see brown pelicans 12 months of the year out around the ocean, but many feed a bit inland in winter but I’m sure I could still find some along the beach. These are adult brown pelicans but only look brown as immature juveniles.

    • We have also seen wading birds such as egrets adjust their feeding style to match up with available food and start using a swoop and dive technique that is more like an osprey then an egret.

  2. Amazing captures here too! Wow that fish looks huge, could you see it desperately struggling/wriggling inside the Pelicans pouch the whole time? So in that last shot does the bird swallow the unlucky prey alive down to its stomach?! It can digest it bones and all as well? Thanks for the info/feedback! 😉

    • Thanks very much for looking and commenting I appreciate it.
      Yes indeed birds such as pelicans and herons will swallow down even a large fish alive and whole. I don’t know how long the fish remains alive once swallowed but it can’t be very long and the birds must have an amazing digestive system.

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