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The pelican is a large water bird with a very long beak. It swallows up to around 10 % of its own body weight each day. In comparison, a grown man would have to eat a good eight kilograms.
The long, large beak is the pelican's most striking feature. When hunting fish, they use it like a large soup spoon. They scoop up a large amount of water together with the fish, and then press the water out again. This leaves just the fish behind. The Great White Pelican has a distinctive pink ring around the eyes and pink-coloured legs. The Australian pelican has the longest beak at 49 centimetres. The Dalmatian pelican is the largest. Despite its weight of 12 kilograms, it is very capable of sustained flight. 500 kilometres at a stretch are not uncommon.
The beak of the pelican holds up to eleven litres of water. Its stomach, however, is only half as big.