Nigel is one of the supporting protagonists in Finding Nemo.
In Finding Nemo, Nigel was friends with the Tank Gang, and also met Nemo after he ended up joining them (due to being taken from his habitat by the dentist). However, he is usually driven out by the dentist shortly thereafter. Nigel later told Nemo about his dad Marlin's attempt to find Nemo after hearing it from his pelican friends, which gave Nemo a new drive at sabotaging the filter. He is also annoyed by Seaguls
Nigel eventually met Marlin and his partner Dory when they ended up nearly being eaten by his friend Gerald, and after discovering who they were, he tries to explain that he knows Nemo, but they tried to flee as they weren't willing to be eaten by him. He helps Marlin and Dory escape certain death by the seagulls, and brings them to the dentist's office. When he, Marlin, and Dory think that Nemo is dead, Nigel takes them to a nearby buoy, puts Dory and Marlin back into the water and leaves, saying, "I'm so sorry. Truly, I am."
- Nigel's line to Marlin, "Hop inside my mouth if you want to live.", is an obvious reference to the Terminator film series, in which several times, a character who appears to be a villain offers help to the protagonist and says, "Come with me if you want to live."
- Nigel is a Brown Pelican (Pelecanus occidentalis) although their geographical distribution doesn't extend to Australia and Sydney.