October 3, 2016
- as seen by -Timothy Mohl
Buddy, the American white pelican, has been at the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Bronx Zoo for over 25 years. He spends his summers on Heart Lake, and he winters inside the Aquatic Bird House. Visitors can easily pick out this large waterbird with his bright yellow-orange beak and snow white feathers.
Buddy’s a sneaky guy with a refined palate when it comes to his meals. His preferred type of fish is spearing over his main diet of capelin. This allows for the perfect opportunity to use his favorite food to train him to say “AHHHH” – so he opens up and shows us that big pouch.
In the wild, this immense pelican pouch expands to accommodate a large scoop of fish and water. The water is squeezed out, and the day’s catch remains. But our friend, Buddy, just like a magician, is able to delicately sort out his fish favorites in his pouch, and spit out the rest.