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Rescued white pelican released on Sanibel

Posted at 10:36 AM, Feb 21, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-01 12:15:01-05

SANIBEL, Fla. -- A white pelican was released at the "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge on Wednesday afternoon after receiving treatment at a local wildlife clinic.

Staff at the Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife (CROW) on Sanibel say the bird was rescued and admitted to their wildlife hospital on February 7th.

Veterinary staff said the pelican had signs of red tide poisoning, including head tremors, an inability to stand, extreme weakness and a decreased blink reflex.

Although red tide organisms have disappeared from our coasts for now, toxins can still get passed through their food sources.

These large birds are seasonal residents, a true "snowbird", that migrate to Southwest Florida during winter months.