The Assistant Manager at Anastasia State Park stopped by our site and asked us to take the 4 wheel drive pickup out on the beach and drive to the jetty to rescue a wounded pelican. I have to confess that I was a little concerned.
“How do you grab a wounded pelican?” I asked, knowing they were rather large. “If he gets your hand in his beak, Don’t jerk and you won’t get hurt.” He told me.
This was of little comfort so we stopped and picked up our friend Gordon Bell, a man’s man when it comes to farting around with animals or winged fowl. I wasn’t afraid, mind you, just cautious.
Driving the beach for 4 ands a half miles was a bit stressful, what with trying to keep the truck from getting stuck in the sand while at the same time avoiding sun worshipers and flocks of terns. We finally found the bird but it was not a pelican. Rather, it was a sea gull who had a nasty fishing lure with multiple treble hooks caught in its chest. I probably could have handled it but I dispatched Gordon and my assistant to pick it up.
The bird was in shock but the two them untangled the fishing line and cut it off but had to leave the fishing lure. The bird had it in his mouth and was not going to let go anyway.
We got him (or her) back to the campground where we were dispatched to the bird hospital.
At last report, the bird was recovering.