Preliminary data on the importance of israel for the conservation of the white pelican pelecanus onocrotalus l

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The majority of the western Palaearctic populations of the Great White Pelican Pelecanus onocrotalus stop over in Israel during their autumn migration. The annual average number of pelicans observed over Israel in autumn was 71, 42115, 027. Although most of these buds were transient over Israel, increasing numbers of individuals (1130± 303, between 1990 and 1993) stay and winter in the northern part of Israel. The natural feeding sites for pelicans were diminished during recent decades due to human activities such as the drainage of the Hula swamp in northern Israel 40 years ago. However, intensive fishery and aqua-culture sites became their favourite feeding places either during migration or in winter. The nsh industry complained that the birds seriously affect nsn yield. The pelicans not only cause direct damage to the fish industry by prédation, but they also transfer nematodes to fish (Oreochromis sp.). As yet, there is no solution to the problem of these parasitic nematodes. This preliminary study revealed that the average daily fish consumption per individual was 0, 52kg and the small sample size did not indicate any selection for certain fish species or size. Flight range estimation indicated tnat the pelicans, especially the weak individuals, need to feed during their stopover in Israel or in the relatively rare appropriate feeding sites along their southward migratory route over the desert in order to reach their wintering areas in eastern central Africa.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)213-217
Number of pages5
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1994

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics


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