A large, relatively intact fossil bird's egg collected on Bermuda over a century ago is identified here as that of a Brown Pelican Pelecanus occidentalis, a species known historically only as an occasional vagrant in Bermuda. Although the exact provenance and age were originally unknown, contemporary descriptions of the stratigraphy and subsequent amino acid ratios of the attached limestone matrix establish the age as a Middle Pleistocene interglacial, probably Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 11 or perhaps slightly older. The presence of an egg is a very likely indication of at least a small former breeding colony of Brown Pelicans on Bermuda. Ecological conditions during interglacial periods and presence of potential fish prey would have made such a colonization feasible.
Marine Isotope Stage 11