• Jerry Hetrick


Updated: Apr 6, 2019

I saw them with my own eyes. On two different mornings I stood at the edge of the wild bird sanctuary and photographed scores of white pelicans.

On a third occasion, I was at the sanctuary and a couple asked what sort of birds they could expect to see. On a small island, in one of the ponds, there were a couple of white pelicans among the geese and other waterfowl.

"See the pelicans over there? Hundreds live here."

The man answered, "I don't think the white pelicans are ocean birds, I believe they are migratory."

"I mumbled something about how I believed he was correct. I'd been schooled."

I gave information based on what I saw. I knew there were scores of pelicans in the ponds. It's interesting to me how easy it is to think we understand something with a small amount of information.

The truth is, I inadvertently witness a unique moment in the migration of these magnificent birds. I didn't know what I was witnessing. From a photographic perspective, I would have focused more on the fleeting event. From a personal perspective, I learned (again), to be open to understanding that I see life in bits and pieces and live in partial truths.

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