In the shallow swamps of Africa, the great white pelican (Pelecanus onocrotalus), also known as the eastern white pelican, rosy pelican, or white pelican, is one of the largest flying birds in the world. In the pelican family, it is a bird; it breeds in swamps and shallow lakes from southeastern Europe through Asia and Africa. It has the qualities of many birds, such as swimming and long flights. The “gular pouch” within its beak is its special feature. With completely webbed toes, its legs are short and strong that allows it to propel itself in water and to take off from the water surface. The order “Pelecaniformes” is made up of pelicans and their relatives and they can be differentiated from other birds by having webbed feet for all 4 toes, known as “totipalmate.” The great white pelican has been listed as a species of least concern on the IUCN Red List of Endangered Species (IUCN). It is also classified within the European Union’s 108 Special Security Areas. It occurs in its European range within 43 Important Bird Areas (IBAs). It is one of the species protected by the Agreement for the Protection of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds (AEWA). Slightly larger than females, male Great White Pelicans are. Males have a length of 175 centimeters (69 in) and females are 148 centimeters long. Males also have a beak/bill slightly longer, measuring 35-47 centimeters, while the female is 29-40 centimeters. The weight is 9-15 kilograms for the Pelican male and 5-9 kilograms for the female. They both have a massive wingspan that can be up to 3 meters high. They are strong fliers and often fly in flocks to decrease drag for the group in a V-formation. It measures 140 to 180 cm (55 to 71 in) long with an immense pink and yellow bill of 28.9 to 47.1 cm (11.4 to 18.5 in) and a dull pale-yellow gular pouch. The wingspan measures 226 to 360 cm (7 ft 5 into 11 ft 10 in), the latter figure being the largest outside of the great albatross among current flying animals. In Lake Edward, Uganda, the average weight of 52 males was 11.45 kg (25.2 lb) and 7.59 kg was found in 22 females (16.7 lb). The average weight for males in South Africa was 9.6 kg (21 lb) and 6.9 kg for females (15 lb). The tuft of feathers on the backside of their head may also distinguish males. The bird is mostly quiet but has a number of low-pitched calls that are low, grunting, and growling. The flight call is a deep, quiet croak while giving deep moooo calls in breeding colonies.
Great White Pelicans with black and grey main feathers are white in color. With long, wide wings attached, their bodies are huge. They’ve got a flat, short tail, pink legs, and webbed feet. A bare pink/yellow facial patch around their eyes is present. Azure blue on the top and yellow below, where there is a wide pouch, are their magnificent bills. The bill has a red central stripe, and it ends up with a thin, red hook. But for the black wingtips, the plumage is mainly white. Depending on the gender or breeding season, the chest and throat can be pinkish or yellowish. A breeding male’s bare facial patch is pinkish while the female is orangey in hue. Thus, in this species, the sexual dimorphism is exceptionally prominent (perhaps the largest known in any current pelican), as sometimes the male can be more than 30 percent more massive than the female on average. As the heaviest flying bird to live in Africa, the great white pelican rivals the kori bustard, which has even more pronounced sexual dimorphism. The enormous, long bill/beak of the Great White Pelican is used to suck up fish from the sea. The pouch is stretchy under the beak and can accommodate several liters of water. The lower bill bows back, forming a wide pouch that fills with water and fish as the Pelican moves its bill underwater. The pouch contracts as the bird raise its head, pushing the water out, but maintaining the entirely swallowed fish. In northeast Africa and Iraq to the north of India and southern Vietnam, migratory populations occupy Eastern Europe to Kazakhstan when it is the breeding season and during winter. They occur in freshwater lakes, marshes, swamps, or deltas in Europe, wherever the amount of grass or reed beds for nesting is adequate. They are found in lowland and freshwater or alkaline lakes in Africa. In the Danube Delta in Romania, more than 50 percent of Eurasian great white pelicans breed. They also tend to remain in the lakes around Burgas, Bulgaria, and Bulgaria’s Srebarna Bay. With stragglers reaching Java and Bali in Indonesia, northern populations migrate to China, India, Myanmar. These are mainly lowland birds, but in East Africa and Nepal they can be found living at altitudes of up to 1,372 m. (4,501 ft). Great White Pelicans feed mostly on fish such as carps and cichlids, although small invertebrates are also eaten. Instead of using their large bills to scrape the fish into their mouths by dipping their heads into the water, these water birds do not have to dive to capture their prey. Often feeding is conducted cooperatively, with many pelicans moving into a circle to focus the fish and dipping their heads in unison into the water to capture the fish. For good fishing, this allows. Every pelican requires about 2.6 pounds (1.2 kilograms) of fish a day. It is an elegant soaring bird in flight, with the head kept close and aligned with the body. A few slow wingbeats accompanied by a glide are part of its flight. They eat chicks of other birds in certain cases, such as the well-known case off the southwest coast of South Africa. In the dirt, nests are formed in scrapes and are lined with vegetation, leaves, sticks, feathers, and other materials available. Typically, two eggs are laid and the female incubates them for 31 days. At 75 to 85 days, chicks escape, attaining reproductive maturity when they are three to four years old. The Pelican chicks are gray with dark flying feathers. Both parents give care for them. The Great White Pelican’s life span can be over 16 years old. Today, white pelicans are forced to travel long distances to find food because of overfishing in some areas.