Monday, May 4, 2015

From thousands to four? Pelicans scoop goldfish from Colorado lake

A few weeks ago, we posted about the goldfish problem in Teller Lake #5, Colorado.  They expected to either shocking the fish to collect them or even drain the lake.  Pelicans have save them the trouble of deciding a course of action.  When Colorado Parks and Wildlife personnel visited the lake on Tuesday to sample the lake, they came up with nary a goldfish.  Whereas a few weeks ago thousands could be seen in the lake, only four goldfish were observed from the boat.  While wildlife biologists had seen American white pelicans (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos) scooping the goldfish and had found some that had been regurgitated, they didn't expect such a reduction of the population.  Due to the fact that the remaining number of goldfish is so small and are expected to be finished off by the pelicans or the bass, Colorado Parks and Wildlife don't need to do anything else.  The "natural control" the pelicans provided may even lead to strategic placement of rehabilitated pelicans, an option which may be brought up at the next state aquatic biologists meeting.

American white pelican (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos) by Terry L Spivey, Terry Spivey Photography,
The original article: Hungry pelicans credited with gobbling thousands of goldfish infesting Boulder lake
American white pelican images: Pelecanus erythrorhynchos