These two Brown Pelicans (Pelecanus occidentalis), exhibiting the bright plumage typical of of breeding adults, were observed among a flock of 20 off Morro Rock on January 15, 2006. Brown Pelicans have made an amazing recovery from when they were first listed as endangered in the entire U.S. in June 2, 1970, and they are now frequently seen in Morro Bay. They are still listed as endangered in the entire range, except for the Atlantic coast of the United States, Florida and Alabama, where they were delisted in Feb. 4, 1995 due to recovery. Populations in California, Texas, and Louisiana were decimated in the U.S. by pesticides (DDT and related compounds) in the 1950s and 60s. Brown Pelicans hunt fish with spectacular twisting plunge-dives from the air. This species can reach up to 8 pounds and larger individuals have a wing spread of over 7 feet.
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