Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Great Blue Heron

Jasmine loves chasing the Great Blue Herons. They're big and they squawk a lot when disturbed.

Herons are smarter than you might think... Normally a heron lands on the path and then walks around a bit, looking for a likely place to fish before walking down into the water.

The local ones have learned to land in the pond itself, below Jasmine's vantage point.

Idiotic bored hunters around here sometimes shoot at them, so this one wouldn't let me any closer to take his picture.


Rurality said...

Just a note to say that I'm not against hunters in general; in fact they are responsible for a lot of the wetland and wilderness preservation in the US. (They have to protect the bird habitat if there are going to be any birds left to hunt.) It's just uneducated hunters that I don't have much patience with... The ones who shoot at herons, a non-game bird, "because there wasn't anything else to shoot at".

Eva said...

Beautiful photograph! I think I know myself well enough to know I'm a city person through and through. But, when I look at your photographs I think of how wonderful it must be to live in such a beautiful place -- there is such a feeling of peace.

Anonymous said...

Many people will use heron decoys in their lakes/ponds as a way to attract ducks. Herons are known for being intolerant of much human activity nearby and will leave if approached. Thus they don't tend to linger near sites with hunters. And so the ducks and geese will tend toward a lake or pond where they see a heron. So congratulations on being able to approach this one as closely as you did.
And shame on slob hunters. They give the whole sport a bad name, and it isn't fair.

fred said...

I'm curious about the tree hanging over the water behind the heron. I thought at first, it was sweetgum. But the "fruits" seem to large, and round, not spikey. Hickory nuts still in their husks this late in the season? Or something else?

Rurality said...

Thanks Eva, we really do like it here.

Anon, thanks for the info!

Fred, it's a Sycamore (Platanus occidentalis). The seed balls are starting to fall apart now, there used to be a lot more!

Dean said...

It is great to see the early green of spring on your photo! Any blue heron that would show up at our pond, and they do during the summer, would have to bring a snow shovel and ice pick now. I've spent time everyday this week so far shovelling snow - but then there are no mosquitoes.

Rurality said...

Dean, since we've been here it hasn't stayed cold long enough to freeze the whole pond, although we've had ice along the banks.

It can get that cold here, it just doesn't happen very often.