This order comprises three families, Pelecanidae (pelicans), Scopidae (Hamerkop), and Balaenicipitidae (Shoebill).


Timetree of Pelecaniformes based on Kennedy et al. (2013) and Prum et al. (2015), with the distribution of each family being indicated by the colour-code used throughout this website (see Distribution colour code). 



Kennedy, M., S.A. Taylor, P. Nádvorník, and H.G. Spencer (2013), The phylogenetic relationships of the extant Pelicans inferred from DNA sequence data,

Mol. Phylogenet. Evol. 66, 215-222. DOI: 10.1016/j.ympev.2012.09.034. (abstract)

Prum, R.O., J.S. Berv, A. Dornburg, D.J. Field, J.P. Townsend, E.M. Lemmon and A.R. Lemmon (2015), A comprehensive phylogeny of birds (Aves) using

 targeted next-generation DNA sequencing, Nature 526, 569-57. (abstract)

Great White Pelican (Pelecanus onocrotalus).

Dalmatian Pelican (Pelecanus crispus).

Hamerkop (Scopus umbretta) (Foto: Mary Yalda)

Shoebill (Balaeniceps rex) waiting motionlessly in swamps for fish, lungfish and other prey.