Great white pelican (Pelecanus onocrotalus)

In the last 60 years in Bulgaria the Dalmatian pelican (Pelecanus crispus) almost without any exceptions, was the only breeding pelican throughout the country. In the past, however, the Great white pelican was much more widespread. Probably, in antiquity it was kept or reared as a beautiful park-decorative bird. Today the nearest to Bulgaria permanent breeding site is in the Danube river' Delta. About 150 years ago this species nested in many inland swamps in the country. Villagers from the village (present day town) Straldzha for example, went hunting for pelicans in the former Straldzha swamp. They loaded their carts with dead birds, killed with clubs among the reeds, and fatten their pigs with pelicans…
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