Maryland state police said they made an arrest Friday after being told a man was bragging that he was wanted in Florida for “tackling a pelican.”
According to the state police, a video showing a man in Florida luring and then jumping on a pelican in water had been posted on social media.
On Friday, the Maryland state police said they were contacted by members of the public who said they thought the man in the video was staying at a hotel in Ocean City.
The police said they went to the hotel and took a man into custody.
Officials said William Hunter Hardesty, 31, of Riva, Md., was arrested on a warrant from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.
The Maryland police said the warrant charges animal cruelty to migratory birds and the intentional feeding of pelicans. The Maryland police said Hardesty is being held while awaiting extradition to Monroe County, Fla.
A video of the Florida incident shows a man apparently offering a fish to a pelican. Eventually the man enters the water and appears to seize the bird. But eventually the big-billed bird is either released, or escapes the man’s grip, and splashes away.