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Itchy Pelly

Itchy Pelly
Photo Information
Copyright: Manyee Desandies (manyee) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3089 W: 230 N: 6774] (23770)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-09-15
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon Powershot S3 IS
Exposure: f/3.5, 1/800 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2007-09-16 22:38
Viewed: 3117
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 30
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
This weekend, at a birthday party at a beach house atop a cliff, I looked down on the beach and saw a flock of pelicans down below. Abandoning friends and cake, I enthusiastically clambered down a rather steep cliff, my trusty little camera around my neck. Three hours later, with the sun going down and the air getting cool, I thought maybe I should go back to the beach house to rejoin the party. That was when I realized that there was no way I could have climbed back up the vertical cliff without help. I was stranded on the beach below, so I had no choice but to take more pictures... in the light of the setting sun.
P.S. My husband eventually realized that I was "missing in action", and came to rescue me.

Brown Pelican
Pelecanus occidentalis

Grand gosier, Pélican brun (French)
Alcatraz, Pelícano café, Pelícano pardo (Spanish)

Unique among the world's seven species of pelicans, the Brown Pelican is found along the ocean shores and not on inland lakes. It is the only dark pelican, and also the only one that plunges from the air into the water to catch its food.

Large, dark waterbird.
Long bill with extensible pouch.
Legs short.
Body large and heavy.
Feet webbed.
Wings long and broad.
Tail short.
Soars close to water surface.
Dives from the air into the water.
Size: 100-137 cm (39-54 in)
Wingspan: 200 cm (79 in)
Weight: 2000-5000 g (70.6-176.5 ounces)
Sexes look alike; males slightly larger.

Generally silent away from nesting colony. Nestling squawks for food; adults have low, hoarse display calls.

Conservation Status:
Shooting for feathers and to "protect" fishing caused declines in pelican populations in the first half of the 20th century. Pesticide poisoning, especially by DDT, caused severe declines across the range in the late 1950's and the extirpation from Louisiana ("the pelican state"). It was listed as Endangered throughout the range in 1970. The ban on DDT led to a population recovery, and it was removed from the Endangered Species list in Atlantic Coast states in 1985. Breeding numbers in most states are stable or increasing, and the total population in the United States now exceeds historical levels.

Cool Facts:

While the Brown Pelican is draining the water from its bill after a dive, gulls often try to steal the fish right out of its pouch. They sometimes even perch on the pelican's head or back and reach in. The pelican itself, however, is not above stealing fish from other seabirds. It also follows fishing boats and hangs around piers for handouts.
The Brown Pelican frequently lowers its head onto its shoulders with the bill open, pulls its head back, and stretches the pouch over its throat and neck. The exposed neck looks like a large lump sticking up out of the pouch.
Unlike most birds, which warm their eggs with the skin of their breasts, pelicans incubate their eggs with their feet. They hold the eggs under the webs that stretch from the front toes to the hind toe, essentially standing on the eggs to warm them. This peculiar incubation method made them vulnerable to the effects of the pesticide DDT. The DDT made the eggshells thin, and the incubating parents frequently cracked their eggs.


jstewart, earthtraveler, Patleboss, kjpweb, MMM, marhowie, John_F_Kennedy has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Glorious colours and an interesting pose. I liked your note both for the personal anecdote as well as the facts.
Thanks, John

Hi Manyee,
Humorous POV and composition.
The golden reflections are very pleasing.

  • Great 
  • demeve Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 586 W: 12 N: 1682] (6165)
  • [2007-09-16 23:34]

Hello Manyee,
Just marking my critique for now, as I don't have
much time right now to make a proper one. but I'll be back later.


I think I would have done the same thing.You can always eat cake.
I like the lighting colour, and the fact you got this in that position. Focus on the eye seems just right.

Good light and sharpness..
Strong compo.
Well done, Manyee

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2007-09-17 1:20]

Hello Manyee,
Beautiful warm golden colours. Remarkable nice pose and composition. Great POV.

Splendid shot with an outstanding lighting, lovely pose and great focus, it is a great shot,

  • Great 
  • MMM Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1114 W: 0 N: 2546] (11425)
  • [2007-09-17 7:04]

Hi Manyee
Very nice compo.Deatails and colors are great.I also like the reflextion in the water and the catch light in the eye.
TFS Michel

Poor Dandre... I can just see him now, shaking his head... and coming to the rescue of wife or dog or whatever!! mmm... took him three hours to miss you! I think he knows better than rush you when you are on a photographic mission.

I love your shot of this scratching pelican. The action along with the wonderful light make for a very effective image.

Evelynn : )

Hi Manyee,
A beautiful capture of this brown pelican. Lovely details and composition. The light work is very nice here. Thanks a lot for sharing.

Nice close-up shot of the bird, like the sharpness of the image, good details captured, natural colour tones.
Best wishes,

Hi again Manyee,
Thats so funny, did your husband have to remind you that you were being rude?(lol). Great action shot of this pouncing pelican. :)

Nice crispy shot with beautiful golden light. Great capture. Cheers!

  • Great 
  • hibou Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 217 W: 1 N: 331] (1629)
  • [2007-10-17 17:26]

Hello Manyee,
What a great effect of the sun light... compo and POV are just perfect ... TFS

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