Journey of the Pelicans - An Australian Outback Mystery

43' / HD

It’s the pelican, not the koala or the extinct Tasmanian tiger, that stands for one of the great mysteries of Australian ecology. This gentle giant bird seems to be synonymous with the seaside, one that attracts instant delight from young and old alike. Astonishingly, homeland for the pelican is not the extensive coastline, but the ephemeral lakes of Australia’s arid desert regions. When nature calls, the desert is where all pelicans return to breed, where their chicks grow until they are old enough to follow their parents back to the coast. An arduous journey of thousands of kilometres. Every few years flooding rejuvenates the creeks and rivers of the outback’s channel country, providing rare and spectacular events. Refilled lakes and waterholes then attract up to a hundred thousand pelicans to breed on their islands and shores. But when and why are they summoned to go? How do they know where to go, and that the desert will provide for them when they get there? 

Producer: Marco Polo Film
Production year: 2021
Broadcasters: ZDF, arte
Languages: English, German, French