Galveston Bird of Prey

Galveston Bird of Prey

Liz and I this shot this image last year on Galveston Seawall. The brown pelican is a common coastal bird in many parts of North and South America, including the Gulf of Mexico region where Galveston is located. They are known for their distinctive appearance, including a long bill and a large throat pouch.

There is a long-standing and symbolic connection between pelicans and Christian religious imagery, including associations with the crucifixion of Christ. The symbolism describes in times of famine that a mother pelican would pierce her own breast with her beak to feed her chicks with her blood. This act of self-sacrifice was seen as a symbol of Christ's sacrifice on the cross, with the mother pelican representing Christ.

The symbolism is captured in the medieval hymn "Adoro Te Devote" attributed to St. Thomas Aquinas, which includes the lines:

"Like what tender tales tell of the Pelican;
Bathe me, Jesus Lord, in what Thy bosom ran—
Blood that but one drop of has the power to win
All the world forgiveness of its world of sin."