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Injured pink-backed pelican admitted to uShaka Sea World

By Ann Kunz 

This afternoon the uShaka Sea World Animal Health team admitted a juvenile pink-backed pelican into their care.

Even though it was not possible to determine whether the pelican is male or female, the team decided to call her Penelope.   

Penelope was seen early this week struggling to maintain her balance in the Richards Bay harbour. She was rescued by Wynand Strauss who took her to Dr Otto, a local Richards Bay veterinarian who identified the injury to her left leg.   She remained in Dr Otto’s care for the following two days before being driven to Durban courtesy of local resident Shelly Prinsloo and the Richards Bay SPCA.

Initial examination on arrival at uShaka Sea World showed evidence that the injury to her leg was infected.  She was weighed, given electrolytes and a few sardines which were infused with antibiotics and left to rest.

We will continue to offer supportive therapy and conduct further investigations in the coming few days.  We are looking forward to caring for Penelope and are hopeful that she will make a full recovery in the coming months.

“Through my experience working at SANCCOB where I had the privilege of working with these charismatic birds, I discovered that pelicans are highly intelligent birds with strong characters.” said uShaka Sea World veterinarian, Dr Francois Lampen.