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The art of pelican seduction and general community integration 

Kumana National Park

Fun Facts

Before a Spot-billed pelican can become a family bird, they need to prove they’re good dancers as a marital prerequisite! This courtship solo dance involves males to puff up their pouch and use swinging motions and head-bobbing, followed by a hip-hop finale of tilting their head backwards! However, once they seal the deal, they prefer privacy for any verbal domestic disputes – the equivalent of “we’ll talk about it when we get home”. After being silent in public, they hiss, grunt or snap their bills back at their nest!

Did you know?

Spot-billed pelicans were once used by fishermen in parts of eastern Bengal as decoys, as it was believed an oily secretion from this bird attracted certain fish! However, in Sri Lanka, these pelicans are the ones doing most of the fishing, usually as a flock. They thrive on being part of a diverse feathered community, as usually several nests can be seen in a single tree together with other storks, herons, egrets and cormorants.

Whereabouts

The Spot-billed pelican is a common breeding resident in tanks, lagoons and marshlands of the low-country dry zone. Birds originally released from the National Zoological Gardens of Sri Lanka in Dehiwala have established breeding colonies in and around Colombo’s marshy areas and wet zones.

 

Much more than just a great place to stay

"Thanks to our guide Avinka we had five great safaris staying four nights just after reopening this February. The staff made us feel so very welcome during the entire stay.

The safaries are just wonderful, and having a great guide in your vehicle makes a big difference. Avinka can spot animals you would never see and we were even lucky enough to sight leopards on the trees, close to our vehicle, and also running through the field. The wildlife is so exciting that you will have a great experience even if you don‘t see any leopards. We also had a great driver, which is essential if you drive through difficult territory. You are being taken care of the entire time, so even for those who do safaris for the first time, you will always feel safe.

The camp itself is very comfortable, you get everything you can think of, and on top of the great food being served with so much attention and friendliness. You also get wonderful vegetarian and vegan options. They put on bonfires at night, which makes it unforgettable.
When booking and making plans, you get great support from the headquarters, even if it gets difficult since you have to change your plans.
The best thing what can happen to you at the end of a vacation is when you are a bit sad to leave the place, having experienced something to remember forever, and the team does everything for this to happen. Thank you so much"

Axel S wrote, Traveled with family
January 2021

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