White Pelican Release, Columbia River, Wa
White pelicans have been recovering and returning to many parts of their former range thanks to conservation efforts. This return may bring the birds back into close contact with humans and remind us all of the ongoing need for attention and education. A colony on white pelicans nesting along the Columbia River in 2014 was so harrassed by human activity that the birds finally abandoned their nests and newly-hatched young. Some 25 of over 30 chicks rescued by the Wildlife Center actually survived. These youngsters were subsequently released on the river when they were old enough to care for themselves.
My wife and I were honored to participate in this release and the following photos capture in a small way the event.
We wish these pelicans the best of luck! Would that state and local authorities do more to educate and prevent disturbances to such magnificant birds.