Last Looks, Migrating American White Pelican Another Endangered Species
Last Looks, American White PelicansClick thumbnail to view full-size
One Last Look
It is March 28, 2013. Homeless again. Relatives were letting me bathe and spend an occasional night, but I had to find a place to live quickly. My bird is like a pirate, but she cannot stand the cold.
Working for Robert Half International eighty miles away did not pay enough to cover gas and wear & tear on the vehicle.
I just landed a local part-time job. Things are starting to look up, but it has been a very difficult four months. The place I had to come after losing my apartment doesn't have any bridges or other structures big enough to jump off of, but the thought had been in my mind.
Always; my disclaimer: I have it better than many other people and critters on this Earth. I have some family that loves me, I have gotten to eat this week, and I still have a habitat to inhabit, my car is paid for and runs. My bird does not judge me.
For those who understand the care of Creator, there are some days when we have to take the harder path, but then there is this blessing that we could not have ordered if we tried, but it is perfect. It is what we need to keep pushing on, and realize that all this bad stuff will pass. Everything in life is cyclic. If it is terrible, it may get even more terrible, but then the film moves up the reel, and ta da, there is a reason to laugh, smile and feel again..
This morning, it is like my third day of working, one week from my first paycheck. Driving my usual route to work, I noticed a flash of white above, seeing some majestic large birds coming in for a landing at Shiloh Park. It is a leg of Lake Dardanelle, in Russellville, Arkansas. It was about 7:15a.m. and I immediately pulled off onto a small dirt road to observe these beauties without disturbing their visit.
I Stayed Back From The Water
When I first pulled up to the wooded area across from Shiloh Park, I was careful not to get too close. I could tell there was a little alarm that went through the flock as I pulled in, but once I stopped and turned off the engine, the group settled back down.
I always carry my camera, because you never know when there will be an interesting subject to photograph or video. I took about 15 photos when I remembered my Canon™ sx150 has video capability. I switched to video, and after I shut-up, realized I might get the sounds of their congregation as well as the beauty and dance of their visit.
I have a lot to learn about shooting video, but am happy to have had the opportunity to film these endangered birds. At the time, I did not know they were American White Pelicans, but began to research these graceful birds, and learned that they are endangered and due to pesticides and human interruption have lost breeding grounds and habitat.
American (white) Pelican Migration in Russellville, AR
Links About the American White Pelican
- Holla Bend National Wildlife Refuge
- American White Pelican - wildlife animals, conservation, adaptation and information
Learn about animals, adaptation and conservation in Africa, Asia, Australia, North America and South America
- American White Pelican
American White Pelican habitat, behavior, diet, migration patterns, conservation status, and nesting.
- Species profile: Minnesota DNR
Awareness - Human vs. Nature
Once more my heart is stirred for all of the creatures who share this planet. They share, they are exterminated, us humans take, and take.
During my 50+ years on this planet, I have seen the melting of the ice caps, Greenland, and Alaska. Species are disappearing at an alarming rate, because their habitats are being destroyed for human energy needs, waste, and human population growth.
After doing research into the American White Pelican, I sadly realized, this could be my first and last sighting of the American White Pelican, and very probably my grandchildren will never view such a beautiful living exhibit.
The American White Pelican mate for life, as do Wolves, and Bald Eagles. It is more of a shame that this is less important than what humans want. Perhaps we will wake up before we are a declining species too.
White Pelican Place
A Week After Seeing The Pelicans in Russellville, AR
On April 1, 2013 an Exxon Pipeline busted, flooding a neighborhood in Mayflower, Arkansas. Mayflower, Arkansas is 54 miles Southeast of Russellville, AR.
Mayflower shares several large bodies of water which are home and lure to Avian and Aquatic Habitat. There are Eagle pairs, many kinds of duck species, bass, trout, perch and bream. It is a sportsman's paradise. Birders stay active in protecting the species and habitats, but when something spills, there is little one can do.
When I learned about the spill, shortly after witnessing the beautiful Pelicans, I felt a sinking feeling. My hope is that they did not choose Mayflower as a hop through.
Asking around, someone told me they White American Pelicans were spotted near Holla Bend Federal Wildlife Refuge at the Carden Bottoms. That would have meant that the Pelicans avoided the contamination. Here is hoping they did.
April 1, 2013 - Exxon Bituminous Spill - White Pelican Migration
© 2013 Lori J Latimer