International Bird Rescue has learned that a Los Angeles man was arrested yesterday evening for strangling a pelican in Malibu.
As a wildlife rehabilitator that has been caring for pelicans for more than 40 years, International Bird Rescue’s Director Emeritus Jay Holcomb notes, “It’s hard to understand why anyone would hurt a beautiful young Brown Pelican.”
Unfortunately this is not the first time that the organization has witnessed the effects of cruelty against this species. Holcomb explains, “In the past we have seen pelicans with beaks cut off, wings intentionally broken and feathers mangled by fisherman who care only about taking from nature and not preserving it.”
This summer, record numbers of juvenile Brown Pelicans are struggling to hunt and grounding themselves on beaches up and down the coast. Some are tangled in fishing tackle, pierced with fishing hooks, suffering from broken bones, or covered with fish oil from fish cleaning stations in harbors along the West Coast. With over 400 California Brown Pelicans in care over the past month, International Bird Rescue is doing everything possible to help this once endangered bird survive and thrive.