cbs4 My 33 Header Logo

Local

Young Pelicans Found Starving In Florida Keys In Disturbing Numbers

View Comments
Lisa-Cilli-600x450 Lisa Cilli
Lisa Cilli joined the CBS4 News team in June 1995 as producer of the...
Read More

Get Breaking News First

Receive News, Politics, and Entertainment Headlines Each Morning.
Sign Up
For Pet Lovers

TAVERNIER (CBSMiami) – Dozens of young pelicans in the Florida Keys have been found starving and The Florida Keys Wild Bird Center has stepped in to help.

According to wildlife rehabilitator Amanda Margraves, the bird sanctuary, which is located in Tavernier, has seen a large influx of pelicans which are very thin and weak.

“We’re seeing at least double the amount of pelicans than normal this time of year,” Margraves told CBSMiami.com. “They’re all juveniles, very young coming in very emaciated.”

There is no official reason why the birds are starving but there is a theory.

“We think it has to do with the lack of food in Florida Bay,” said Margraves.  She explained that fishermen have been complaining recently that there’s a lack of food such as bait fish and other small fish that pelicans feed on.

“We get a lot of calls about the birds, a lot of local marinas call about birds beaching themselves, things like that,” explained Margraves.

Once the hungry brown pelicans arrive at the center, they are warmed up and fed.  The birds, only about a year old, usually stay for a couple of weeks to be fattened up before being released back into the wild.

The Florida Keys Wild Bird Center currently has taken in 20 young pelicans since January 1st and currently has 25 on its property.

Due to the high number of birds, the center is in desperate need of towels, laundry detergent, bleach and heat lamps.

If you’d like to donate or volunteer, click here for the website.

View Comments
blog comments powered by Disqus
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,517 other followers