Winter is one of my favorite times at Wild Bird Rescue. From my perch, I can see
and all the activities taking place on the water. I especially like the birds that choose this lake for their winter homes. I thought I would take a few minutes to pen some facts about a few of our wintering guests. One which always fascinates me is the White Pelican. I like to think of this bird as the Boeing C-17 of the lake. This huge bird seems to be circling in slow motion as it makes its final approach for landing. The American White Pelican is one of the largest birds in Lake Wichita North America. The White Pelican does not dive for its food. Instead it catches its prey while swimming. Another unusual wintering guest is the American Coot. This bird is often mistaken for a duck but is really a common waterbird. What makes the coot so striking is the all black coloration against the white beak. American Coots are noisy, gregarious members of the rail family. One of the last vacationers I’ll share about today is the Double-crested Cormorant. The Double-crested Cormorant is a little more than two feet long with a wingspan of about four feet. It has dark brown to black feathers, a long hooked bill with an orange throat pouch, a long tail, and webbed black feet. Some fishermen consider this bird a nuisance but I personally love watching them dive for food. Well I hope you have enjoyed my mini-lesson about some of our wintering guests on Lake Wichita. Students…I’ll be sharing more later this week. Phee Phew!