The brown pelican, Pelecanus occidentalis, is characterized by an extremely large gray bill, pale yellow eyes, black legs and feet, and an unfeathered black throat pouch (e.g. Terres 1980; Farrand 1983). Plumage coloration varies with age and season, and descriptions are divided accordingly below. Both sexes exhibit identical coloration at each phase. Adult Breeding Plumage is primarily gray and brown, marked with a blackish belly, yellowish head, and chestnut or cinnamon brown nape and hindneck (Terres 1980; Farrand 1983; Harrison 1996).Adult Non-breeding Plumage is similar but duller to that of the adult coloration during the summer season (Farrand 1983; Harrison 1996). The nape and hindneck are mostly white with occasional tinges of yellow.Juvenile/Immature Plumage is mostly brown above, blending to a white breast and underparts (Farrand 1983; Harrison 1996). Adult plumage is acquired by the third year.
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- FNAI. 2001. Field Guide to the Rare Animals of Florida. Florida Natural Areas Inventory. Online at http://www.fnai.org/fieldguides.cfm (Date accessed 08/07/2010).
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- Farrand Jr., J (Ed.). 1983. The Audubon Society Master Guide to Birding Volume 1: Loons to Sandpipers. Alfred A. Knopf. New York. USA. 447 pp.
- Federal Register. 2009. Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Removal of the Brown Pelican (Pelecanus occidentalis) from the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife; Final Rule. Department of the Interior. Fish and Wildlife Service. Federal Register Vol.17, No. 20. Online at http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=2009_register&docid=fr17no09-14 (Date accessed 08/07/2010).
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