Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Great Blue Heron

As you can guess from the title of my blog, and my introductory post, if you read it, Great Blue Herons are one of my favorite birds and a key instigator in my enjoyment of bird watching.  So it was a great joy this past weekend when I came across this heron that was busy feeding.  I had joined the semi-monthly bird walk with our bird club at Newport New Park.  We were just a few minutes into the first stop and it was turning out to be a pretty quite morning.  We were a small group with a few new watchers who where discussing the differences between Great Egrets and Snowy Egrets.  I wandered around the corner to get a better look at the reservoir to see if there was more to be seen; the egret discussion was being well handled already.  Just beyond the tall grasses at the water's edge I saw this heron waiting patiently as only herons can.  I like this particular picture where you can see the resting female Mallard to the right.  There is a nice echo in how they are holding their heads.
As I waited the heron saw some food in the water and started trying to scare it up.  The heron took several stabs at the poor prey, then whipped it around and dropped it only to start the cycle again.


By this time the rest of the group had caught up but the heron keep on working on it's breakfast.

The heron finally stopped hunting.  We weren't sure it it had eaten the meal or not.  And eventually it flew off and right past us.
I was able to zoom in on one of the pictures and see what it was trying to catch.  We had thought it was a frog but it now looks like a large fishing lure.  Glad he wasn't hurt by it.

Enjoy the other bird photographs at Tuesday's Tweets (also a Great Blue Heron; I didn't know until just now) and Wild Bird Wednesday.

13 comments:

  1. A great series of photos and the last one is a good lesson in why NOT to drop fishing tackle.

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    1. Good point. I had thought it was a real animal until I zoomed in as I writing the post.

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  2. Oh wow these are great! and Mick is right that is a good lesson.

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  3. Very nice photos! I have seen birds caught up in fishing line, and it is not easy to save them if they get hooks in them!

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  4. By the way, I live in Chesapeake - so we are neighbors! I am now following you - always want to support local people!

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  5. Great sequence!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

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  6. Great sequence of shots Bryan! Herons are all cool birds to watch and the Great Blue is one of my faves also. Fishing tackle can be so dangerous to birds, I hope this Heron didn't swallow that lure! Love that second shot with the extended wings!

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    1. I'm pretty sure it did not eat the lure as I thought it had lost interest and threw it away before flying off.

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  7. Hi there - what a great post. I always think I have seen "something" during the day if I see a heron.

    The lure picture is remarkable - it just shows how incredible the digital technology really is. And it shows why you need to clean up after yourself if you go fishing.

    Stewart M – Australia

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  8. Wow...super images!!! I love watching them thar Herons as much as they watch me watch them.

    Fabulous post.

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  9. Nice action shots! Thank you for participating in this weeks Tuesday Tweets.

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