Fishing takes toll on pelicans

ONE of Australia’s most iconic and loved bird species, the pelican, is suffering due to the carelessness of some fishos.

According to the Australian Seabird Rescue, around 90 per cent of injuries to rescued pelicans are caused by discarded fishing tackle such as line and hooks.

Members of the organisation’s NSW South Coast branch recently rescued their 700th injured pelican at Berkeley near Wollongong, on Lake Illawarra.

This number is considerable considering that ASR South Coast has only been established for six years.

The ASR was established by Lance Ferris in Ballina in 1992 when he saw the plight of the pelicans on the north coast of NSW. He then travelled around Australia and found similar problems all along the coast.

The Australian Seabird Rescue relies on volunteers and donations from the community to maintain its rescue and rehabilitation operations.

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