The Release Files: An American White Pelican Returns to Flight

An American White Pelican takes flight after weeks of rehabilitation at International Bird Rescue. Photos by James Hanlon, © 2012.

Happy Monday to all our loyal blog fans!

As we announced on Friday, our wonderful staff and volunteers at our San Pedro center have been caring for an American White Pelican rescued several weeks ago, having been found injured and wrapped in fishing line at the Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve in the San Fernando Valley. This bird came into our care through amazing teamwork that included the San Fernando Valley Audubon Society, the Los Angeles Specialized Mobile Animal Rescue Team (SMART) and wildlife photographer and naturalist James Hanlon.

We were thrilled to release this bird – as well as a fellow White Pelican companion also treated at our center — on Saturday at the wildlife reserve’s tranquil lake. Many bird lovers were on hand for this special event (read news items on the release via the Associated Press and local coverage from the Encino-Tarzana Patch).

Jim Hanlon took several great photos of this release. Read his personal story of the experience here.

Did you attend and take photos or video? We’d love to hear from you and share your snapshots on our Facebook page. Email us!

Pelicans are among the most costly birds to rehabilitate. Please consider supporting International Bird Rescue so that we can continue to care for these birds. Check out to find out how you can help.