Pelican sighting has locals in a flutter

A STRANGE avian sighting got a Suffolk village all in a flutter yesterday.Much to the surprise of locals in Culford, near Bury St Edmunds, a pelican was spotted roosting in a tree in the centre of the village.

A STRANGE avian sighting got a Suffolk village all in a flutter yesterday.

Much to the surprise of locals in Culford, near Bury St Edmunds, a pelican was spotted roosting in a tree in the centre of the village. It remained there long enough for a photography enthusiast to capture the bird on film.

RSPCA officers said the bird would now make Suffolk its home if it can find a source of fish and it isn't captured.

A spokeswoman for the RSPCA said: “It would almost be impossible for this to be a wild bird. It would have to have come from a private collection.


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“If it can find food then it could survive in the wild but they only eat fish except in unusual circumstances.

“If anybody tried to approach it, the pelican might have become quite aggressive. It must belong to somebody. But it has obviously got out of an enclosure.

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“We sent out one of our officers but we could not find anything. We understand that it was not injured and so it had probably flown away by the time we arrived.”

An Environment Agency spokesman said the bird posed no threat to native fish stocks

The bird is thought to be an American White Pelican and can be found more usually in North America as far north as central Canada. They nest inland on large lakes from Canada through north central United States.

In the winter, they migrate to the coast from California to South America.

They reach around 62 inches in length and have a wingspan of up to 9ft. They eat three to four pounds of fish a day by diving for surface fish from around 40ft.

The pelican was later seen flying around Culford School. No-one has yet claimed ownership of the bird.

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