More than 20 Dalmatian pelicans, or Pelecanus crispus, were spotted at Hangzhou Bay Wetland in Ningbo, East China's Zhejiang province on Jan 10.
The rare birds were photographed by Ye Hang, a teacher at a university in Beijing who recently returned to Cixi, a county-level city in Ningbo, to spend the Spring Festival.
A large number of migratory birds would travel to Hangzhou Bay Wetland to spend the winter every year, but this is the first time he has seen so many Dalmatian pelicans, said Ye.
There are roughly 27,000 Dalmatian pelicans in the world, including about 130 in East Asia, according to Jiao Shengwu, an expert in the avian ecology at the Chinese Academy of Forestry.
The bird has been listed a critically endangered species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). It breeds mainly in Mongolia and spends winters in the coastal areas in the southeast part of China, which lists it as a key wildlife under the first-class protection.
Over 30 Dalmatian pelicans were also spotted in Wenzhou Bay last year, bringing the total number of such birds that have appeared in Zhejiang in the recent two years to nearly half of the total in East Asia.