smoothly out, so as not to frighten the life beneath, and at a suitable
distance from the shore, form into a line in accordance with the
sinuosities of the beach, each facing shoreward and awaiting their
leader's signal to start.
"When this is given, all is commotion; the birds, rapidly striking
the water with their wings, throwing it high above them, and plunging
their heads in and out, fairly make the water foam, as they move on in an
almost unbroken line, filling their pouches as they go. When satisfied
with their catch, they wade and waddle into line again upon the beach,
where they remain to rest, standing or sitting, as suits them best, then if
disturbed, they generally rise in a flock and circle high in the air."
The white pelican, while fishing in this manner, no doubt catches
great numbers of small fish. Audubon, the naturalist, writes of finding
"several hundred fishes of the size of what are usually called minnows, in
the stomach of one bird." However it must not be concluded that the
white pelican eats only small fish for it will feed on any size its beak can
THE BROWN PELICAN: The brown pelican is somewhat smaller than
the white pelican. Not a migratory bird, it is found in the West Indies and along
the coasts of Florida and the Gulf of Mexico. In Louisiana it is the State bird.
Although it travels considerable distances for its food, it usually returns
at night to its roosting place with the colony. The brown pelican makes its nest
in low mangrove