|Mandy Rodriguez, co-founder and COO, was able to coax the pelican over to him.|
We may be called Dolphin Research Center, but the staff and volunteers at the facility are committed to helping all critters. Every animal that resides on DRC’s grounds is ensured a safe environment. Whether they’re an iguana that has decided to call us home or a bird that is flying in to try to grab a meal, our mission is to give them an excellent quality of life.
The other day, staff members noticed a pelican in distress. Our very own co-founder and COO, Mandy Rodriguez, watched it to see if it was exhibiting any odd behavior. It seemed as if it needed help, so Mandy decided to catch it to offer assistance.
The pelican was hesitant to come to Mandy, so to get closer to the bird, he got into the water. As he entered, the bird became more comfortable and, with the help of some fish, Mandy coaxed the bird into his arms.
Never one to miss an opportunity for education, Mandy took the time to tell onlookers about the bird. Based on the size of the bill, we were able to determine that it was a female, so we affectionately named her Beverly. Mandy also explained that Beverly was obviously not in a tremendous amount of distress because she was attempting to eat. As he talked more about the pelican, guests were amazed by how calm the bird was in his arms.
|Mandy and staff member, Willy Cotto, discuss pelicans with guests.|
We quickly checked her out. Wanting to err on the side of caution, we took her to the Wild Bird Sanctuary in Marathon, Florida. After we dropped her off and staff thoroughly looked her over, they determined that Beverly had a hook in her neck.
Beverly’s ailment was a direct effect of improperly discarded fishing gear. We are happy that we were able to help her but there are many other birds, as well as other animals, who suffer a similar fate without being saved. It is important to make sure that fishing gear and trash are securely thrown away in order to keep animals safe.
We’re happy we were able to get Beverly the attention that she needed. We wish her the best on her journey to recovery!