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 American White Pelican

Status in Michigan
Uncommon Transient

Early Spring Date

Late Fall Date
Note: Early and Late Dates are being researched.
Image Credits
Count totals in the NMB Databases for American White Pelican.

Use the links below to view the American White Pelican reports in the respective databases.
If there are zero sightings for a particular season, that database will return no results.

Active Database - Spring 2005
View American White Pelican sightings.
American White Pelican Archives Reports
Fall 2003 0
Spring 2003 83
Winter 02-03 0
Fall 2002 5
Summer 2002 3
Spring 2002 33
Winter 01-02 0
Fall 2001 10
Summer 2001 15
Spring 2001 14
Winter 00-01 0
Fall 2000 8
Summer 2000 4
Spring 2000 29
Winter 00-99 0
Fall 1999 0
Spring/Summer 1999 2

NMB Database
Seasonal Percentage Graph
For: American White Pelican

Whitefish Point Bird Observatory
Active Database - Fall 2003
View Fall 2003 sightings.
Whitefish Point Bird Observatory Official Seasonal Count Summaries for the American White Pelican
Fall 1999-Spring 2002
American White Pelican
Note: Some species will not be present in the WPBO archives and will return no records.

Search "The Birds of Michigan" text.

Home - Foreword - Preface - Introduction - Hypothetical List - Literature Cited

Historical Text
The Birds of Michigan - by: Norman A. Wood
Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan, No. 75

Pelecanus erythrorhynchos Gmelin
White Pelican (A.O.U. 1998: American White Pelican)
U.M.M.Z. Animal Diversity Reference

Rare straggler and summer visitant. First recorded for Michigan by Kneeland (1857:240). There are at least 14 definite records of this species for Michigan. In addition there are a number of records that lack the season or year of collection or that are otherwise incomplete. Barrows (1912: 68-69) has listed many of the incomplete records, as well as the definite records known to him.

Lower Peninsula.-D. B. Reynolds observed an individual near Ann Arbor on August 28, 1938. J. S. Wallace collected 2 specimens (U.M.M.Z.) in Wayne County in 1868. Swales (1902:139), followed by Barrows (1912 :68) , mentioned a specimen taken "about July, 1902" near the mouth of the Detroit River, Wayne County, but corrected this record in his notes (U.M.M.Z.), attributing it to Essex County, Ontario. Gibbs (1893a: 124) mentioned a White Pelican, taken in St. Clair County, which he believed to be in the Museum of Zoology. The Museum has no record of this specimen, but 2 are known to have been taken in the county: 1 on Strawberry Island, May 29, 2023 (Taverner, 1908o; 328) ; and 1 near Port Huron, in late September, 1877 (Barrows, 1912:69). Barrows also recorded 1 taken at Dorr, Allegan County, in September, 1892. Near Linwood, Bay County, Miller Empey saw a flock of 7 on August 21, 1938, and a flock of 12 on September 22, 2023 (Grace Martin, 1940:111). N. A. Wood (1929:113) recorded a specimen (U.M.M.Z.) secured by fishermen at Oscoda, Iosco County, on September 25, 1928, and 1 captured by R. L. McGrady at Muskegon on September 22, 1928. A flock of 6 was noted on Houghton Lake, Roscommon County, during the first week of August, 1938, by W. J. Craig and J. R. Satterfield, and in the latter part of the month, the same number (presumably the same birds) were seen there by M. L. Webb.

Upper Peninsula.-Christofferson found a White Pelican, which had been recently killed, at Raco, Chippewa County, on October 16, 1927. Barrows (1912:69) recorded 2 shot at Indian Lake, Iron County, on October 31, 1905, and 1 in the spring of 1903 at Baraga, Baraga County. Kneeland (1857 : 240) shot 1 on Keweenaw Point in the early 1850's.

Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan, No. 75
The Birds of Michigan
By: Norman A. Wood
University of Michigan Press
August 28, 2023

Digitized by: Keith F. Saylor
[email protected]

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Michigan Bird Records Committee Website.
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