Pelecanus rufescens
100 000 rub.

Pink-backed pelican(Pelecanus rufescens)

Class — aves
Order — pelecaniformes
Family — pelecanidae

Genus –pelecanus


It is a relatively small pelican, although by no means is it a small bird. Its length is from 125 to 155 cm (49 to 61 in), wingspan is 2.15–2.9 m (7.1–9.5 ft) and body mass is from 4 to 7 kg (8.8 to 15.4 lb). The bill is 30 to 38 cm (12 to 15 in) in length.

The plumage is grey and white, with a pinkish hue on the back occasionally apparent (never in the deep pink of a flamingo). The top of the bill is yellow and the pouch is usually greyish. Breeding adults have long feather plumes on the head.


Pink-backed pelicans are found near freshwater lakes, rivers, ponds, swamps, particularly in shallower areas with plenty of vegetation. They range from Sub-Saharan Africa south to Botswana and the western Arabian Peninsula along the Red Sea.

These birds are mostly dispersive, especially juveniles, but some regular movements are observed from North into Sub-Saharan steppes for wet season. They perform local movements related to water conditions. They do not migrate long distances.


Food is usually fish (of any size up to 450 g, usually in the 80-290 g range) and amphibians, and is usually obtained by fishing in groups.


Breeding can take place year-round and unlike many pelican species, pink-backed pelicans nest in trees. After courtship, an average of two eggs are laid and incubated by both parents. Lacking a brood patch, pelicans use their feet to keep eggs warm. Both parents will help to raise the young, who will fledge between 70–85 days. Pink-backed pelicans reach sexual maturity between 3–5 years of age.

Pink-backed pelicans may live between 15–25 years in the wild and up to 54 years under human care.


The diet of pelicans should consist mainly of fish. Birds like to eat both small fish, and quite large one-weighing up to 3 kg. The prey is swallowed whole. The fish is digested completely with scales and bones. A bird weighing 5-7 kg can eat up to 9 kg of fish per day. In addition to fish, the diet of the pink-backed pelican can also include numerous aquatic organisms, such as crustaceans, tadpoles and adult amphibians, as well as small turtles.

They are social birds, should be kept in spacious aviaries with a large reservoir. Nesting can begin at any time of the year.