Birds of the Upper Cumberland Region: Species Accounts


American White Pelican (Pelecanus erythrorhyncos)

American White Pelican [lateral view]. Photograph Credit: Linda J. Woody; Lake St. George, Cumberland County, Tennessee; 14 March 2011.


Abundance: Very Uncommon; 13 records in  6 counties, 3 in Kentucky and 3 in Tennessee (Map of UCR Distribution); data from the Regional bird-monitoring efforts are too few to determine a trend for the population migrating through the Region (see also Regional Bird-Monitoring Plan).

Status: Transient during spring (6 records) and fall (6 records); 1 record of uncertain date, but probably fall; photograph (above; see also links to photographs below).

Regional High Count: 29 (19 April 2009; Cumberland County, Tennessee; Marc Lipner, Edmund K. LeGrand).

Information on Records: 

24 October 1987 (1) Burnside Marina, Lake Cumberland, Pulaski County, Kentucky (fide Jackie B. Elmore; Stamm 1988a), photo.

25 October 1988 (2) mouth of Wolf Creek, Lake Cumberland, Russell County, Kentucky (fide L. Andrews; Stamm 1989a).

26 November 2002 (1) Grass Island near Bailey's Point, Barren River Reservoir, Barren/Allen counties, Kentucky (David L. Roemer photo; Busroe 2003a).

Summer or early fall 2004 (6) Lake Karen, Warren County, Tennessee (fide R. Gregg Garrison), photo (date and photographer unknown).

19 April 2006 (1) between Bailey's Point and Peninsula, Barren River Reservoir, Barren/Allen counties, Kentucky (Mike Vessels fide David L. Roemer).

25–27 October 2007 (1) Grass Island and Goose Island, Barren/Allen counties, Kentucky (T. Aaron Hulsey, David L. Roemer photo).

11 November 2008 (1) Fishing Creek Recreation Area, Lake Cumberland, Pulaski County, Kentucky (Roseanna M. Denton photo).

9 April 2009 (6) Skaggs Creek, Barren River Reservoir, Barren County, Kentucky (Betty Norris fide Libby Stuart and David L. Roemer, Anita May photo).

19 April 2009 (29) Lake Tansi, Cumberland County, Tennessee (Marc Lipner fide Edmund K. LeGrand photo).

28 March 2010 (5—in flight) Barren River Reservoir, Barren/Allen counties, Kentucky (David L. Roemer, David Brown; Pamer-Ball and McNeeley 2010c).

29/30/31 October/1/5/12/14–25 November  2010 (3/6/3/6/6/1/1) Barren River Reservoir, Barren/Allen counties, Kentucky (David L. Roemer [all dates] et al.).

14 March 2011 (14) Lake St. George, Fairfield Glade, Cumberland County, Tennessee (Tim J. Woody photo, Linda J. Woody photo [see also Status above]).

14/24 March 2011 (6/2) Sullivan's Bend Rd., Smith County, Tennessee (Greg Woods/Danny Stone).

YardWatch Results 2003 and 2004: No registrations.

Habitat: Moderate- to large-sized bodies of water.

RemarksThe pelican found on Barren River Reservoir during late November 2002 and the pelican found there during October 2007 were never seen within Barren County but were sighted and photographed within Allen County only a few hundred meters from Barren County; in all probability each entered Barren County during its stay on the reservoir.  This matter became of little concern when it was decided c. 2007 to count all birds sighted on or over the reservoir as part of the UCR avifauna and not to be concerned with the exact county that they were in.

    The record in Warren County, Tennessee, is still under investigation; the date of the photo and the name of the photographer remain uncertain.

Check-lists of Birds for the Counties of the UCR

Check-lists of the birds of each county of the Upper Cumberland Region may be viewed by clicking on the links below. For each county, there are two check-lists: one list that shows the species that have been observed and where possible documented in the county within the larger list for the entire Region; and one list that includes only the species observed in the county with annotations for the date and observers for at least one sighting (the ultimate goal of the latter list will be to include annotations for the very first known Regional observation of each species in that county; this goal is probably one that will take many years to complete, if completion is even a possibility). To see if the species discussed in this species account has been observed in a county, click below or click on the link for the Map of UCR Distribution near the top of the page.

Barren Metcalfe Adair Russell Pulaski
Monroe Cumberland Clinton Wayne McCreary
Macon Clay Pickett Fentress Scott
Smith Jackson Overton Putnam Morgan
DeKalb White Cumberland
Warren Van Buren Bledsoe

Check-lists of Birds for Some Public Access Birding Sites of the UCR

Check-lists of the birds of some public access birding sites within the Upper Cumberland Region may be viewed via the links below. To see if the species dealt with in this species account has been observed within any of these sites, click on the appropriate link below. See the pages for each county within the Gazetteer for links to additional smaller public access birding sites with check-lists in progress.

Burgess Falls SP, Putnam/White Counties, TN Barren River Lake SP, Barren County, KY
Cumberland Mountain SP, Cumberland County, TN General Burnside Island SP, Pulaski County, KY
Edgar Evins SP, DeKalb County, TN  
Fall Creek Falls SP, Bledsoe/Van Buren Counties, TN Pulaski County Park, Pulaski County, KY
Frozen Head SNA, Morgan County, TN Waitsboro Recreation Area, Pulaski County, KY
Rock Island SP, Warren/White Counties, TN  
Standing Stone SP, Overton County, TN Big South Fork NRRA, KY and TN
Cane Creek Park, Putnam County, TN  
Roaring River Recreation Area, Jackson County, TN  

Literature Cited