MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — American White Pelicans are some of the largest birds in North America, and they are landing in Minnesota.
A Twin Cities man had a whole flock of the birds, which, at one point, had almost gone extinct, join him for Easter.
Jack Goldburg lives across the street from Lake Virginia in Victoria, Minn. He says he saw about 100 of the pelicans Saturday night.
“When they were out there flapping their wings,” he said, “all the sudden I said those wings are just ginormous.”
He said the birds stayed on the lake for a day.
“I figured they might be looking for Easter eggs or something before their trip,” he said.
DNR bird specialist Carrol Henderson says the birds have a wingspan of about eight feet.
“They are very conspicuous birds,” he said. “If pelicans are in the area, you’re going to notice them.”
In the early 1900s, the White Pelicans were nearly extinct. But for no apparent reason, the population started growing.
First they were seen in other areas of the state, now they’re popping up in the Twin Cities.
“They’re working their way into northern and western Minnesota and up into Canada, where they spend the summer,” Henderson said.
He added that some people mistake the pelicans for bald eagles, but these birds are quite a bit larger.
They are all white with black-tipped wings. He suggests if anyone comes across a flock to take a moment and just watch them.