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Pelicans, cormorants stop in Hudson on migration north

Two American White Pelicans swim in Long Pond, an inlet of Lake St. Croix, on Monday morning. The large water birds use their long beaks and throat pouches to catch fish and drain the water before swallowing.

Flocks of American White Pelicans and cormorants showed up last week on Long Pond, an inlet of the St. Croix River south of the I-94 bridge.

Hudson is apparently a stop-over on the birds' migration to water bodies farther north. Many lakes to the north are still covered with ice because of the late-arriving spring.

By the middle of this week (April 28-May 4), pelicans and cormorants could also be spotted on Lake Mallalieu. The were visible to motorists crossing the Hwy. 35/Second Street bridge.

Pelicans use their long beaks and throat pouches to catch fish and drain the water before swallowing. According to Wikipedia, the adults are 4.3 to 5.9 feet in length, have wingspans of 8 to 9.5 feet, and weigh 10 to 20 pounds.

Cormorants dive beneath the water for their food, feeding on fish and other water creatures.

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