Family: (Pelecanidae) Pelicans
Preferred Habitat: Coastal; rare inland.
Seasonal Occurrence: Permanent resident. Common throughout the year.
Notes: Brown Pelicans are now easy to find at Bolivar Flats, but it was not always the case. A few decades ago they were endangered because of DDT use in the United States. According to John Tveten, in the 1960's Brown Pelican numbers were down to only a little over 100 along the entire Texas coast, with none found on the Upper Texas Coast. Since that time they have rebounded significantly. However chemical pollutants still pose problems. Male and female adults look alike. Juveniles have brown heads and necks. Brown Pelicans nest in colonies. In the early 1990's there were no records of them breeding on North Deer Island, but, beginning in 1999, nesting data shows an encouraging increase in breeding activity. In 2005 there were 1,306 nests counted on North Deer Island.
- Susan Billetdeaux