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Crew saves pelican with fishing hooks in beak, body

Published:   |   Updated: March 18, 2013 at 04:02 PM

The pelican was acting oddly when boaters spotted it, and the reason soon became clear: The bird had been snagged by a fishing lure, and the hooks were buried in its beak and body.

Luckily for the pelican, the boaters were U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary members, and they wanted to help.

One of the crew netted the pelican, and the bird was rushed to the Coast Guard station at Sand Key, where Coast Guard members used wire cutters to remove the lure.

The still-embedded hooks were trickier and were eventually taken out by the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary, where the pelican — named Victory by its rescuers because it was the Memorial Day weekend — is recovering.

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