Friday, January 4, 2013

Pelican pouch yoga, Phillip Island

A few interesting observations were made on a gloomy morning at Fishers Wetland, Phillip Island recently. First was the overall impression of a whole heap of pretty happy birds all feeding. We (Richard and I) did enjoy spotting a single Pink-eared duck amongst a mass of Eurasian coot.

Methinks not unlike a Freo supporter amongst the Collingwood coots!
Eurasian coot, Fishers Wetland, 29 December 2012
You know how the bird standing on one leg always brings out the other one just when you conclude it is lame? This one never seemed to and the leg on view seemed huge
Cape Barren Goose drinking the brackish Fishers Wetland water
Now on to some pelican behaviour ...

I've not seen this before!
 A little "quality" Internet research brought me to this National Geographic article by David A O'Connor which states:
Pelicans perform strange-looking exercises to stretch and maintain their pouch in a brand of pelican yoga. They will gape, holding their mouths wide open. In another pose, they point the bill straight up to the sky, stretching the pouch. Or most evocatively, a bird will turn its pouch completely inside out by forcing it over its breast.

Teal, dotterels and stilts all happily feeding at Fishers
I've not seen this many Red-kneed dotterel at Phillip Island before
An Australasian shoveler amongst the teal
I leave you with some of the comings and goings. In flight we see Australian pelican, Swamp harrier, Australian shelduck and Cape Barren geese.

Fishers Wetland, Phillip Island, 29 December 2012

Bird on!


  1. Hi Pete,
    Great shots of so many birds! I'll be on PI early Feb so let's hope some of them hang around for another few weeks :-)
    Cheers, Ian

  2. Great sightings, gorgeous photos!

    I also love your Rufous fantail: just brilliant!
    Happy birding for 2013!