Green Heron

Another very patient wading bird, the Green Heron. I actually timed this one. Just a couple of blinks, this bird stood still for over 3 minutes. That’s a long time, but I think the Great Blue Heron beats him in the stand like a statue competition.

Green Heron-print-web
Green Heron | Alice Mary Herden | April 2020

Click on the image to view the video.


Links:

https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Green_Heron/lifehistory

https://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/green-heron

 

Great Egrets and Wood Storks

Sadly with the lack of rain in Florida, many wading birds are pretty much forced to be in tight groups as they attempt to get whatever food they can as the water levels drop in this pond. This also gives photographers an opportunity to photograph wading birds in their natural habitat.



Great Egret | Alice Mary Herden
Great Egret | Alice Mary Herden
Great Egret | Alice Mary Herden
Great Egret | Alice Mary Herden
Great Egret | Alice Mary Herden
Great Egret | Alice Mary Herden
Great Egret | Alice Mary Herden
Great Egret | Alice Mary Herden


Link: https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/great_egret/id



Wood Stork | Alice Mary Herden
Wood Stork | Alice Mary Herden

Sharing the water area with the Great Egrets are a few Wood Storks. I love how the sun reveals that shimmering green within their iridescent black wings.

Wood Stork 2
Wood Stork | Alice Mary Herden
Wood Stork | Alice Mary Herden
Wood Stork | Alice Mary Herden

 


Links

http://fl.audubon.org/birds/wood-stork

https://myfwc.com/wildlifehabitats/profiles/birds/waterbirds/wood-stork/


 

Kids

I don’t often get a chance to photograph little ones in their natural habitat, but while on assignment I was able to capture some video and photography of these, sweet and demanding Black-crowned Night Herons chicks.

Black-crowned Night-Heron | Mary 11 | Alice May Herden
Black-crowned Night-Heron | Mary 11 | Alice May Herden

But these kids were driving her nuts.. she finally had enough and took a break. There is one little runt in the group… I do hope it grows up and has a happy and healthy life.

Not the greatest shots, really needed my tripod.. maybe I can head back there to take some better video and photos… overall I was happy to be able to capture them. 


Links:

https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Black-crowned_Night-Heron/overview

https://www.floridastateparks.org/parks-and-trails/ellie-schiller-homosassa-springs-wildlife-state-park

Double-Crested Cormorant (Juveniles)

Unlike the Anhinga who spear their food with their sharp straight beak the Double-Crested Cormorant hooks it’s prey.

Double-Crested Cormorant | March 14 | Alice Mary Herden
Double-Crested Cormorant | March 14 | Alice Mary Herden

Juveniles have pale white/brown chests with patches of darker brown and the adults are dark brown/black. These birds are powerful swimmers.

Double-Crested Cormorant | March 14 | Alice Mary Herden
Double-Crested Cormorant | March 14 | Alice Mary Herden

By the sizes of these, I am assuming a couple of years old. I occasionally drive around Bayport, and I am surprised that I didn’t see them when they were younger, or maybe they were breed somewhere else and moved to this location.

Double-Crested Cormorant | March 14 | Alice Mary Herden
Double-Crested Cormorant | March 14 | Alice Mary Herden

 


Links:

https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Double-crested_Cormorant/overview

https://www.fws.gov/southeast/faq/double-crested-cormorants/

https://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/double-crested-cormorant

Little Blue Heron (Juvenile)

It’s is amazing how wildlife kids transform, how this juvenile little blue heron is pure white and within a year will turn all blue.

Little Blue Heron ( Juvenile) | March 14 | Alice Mary Herden
Little Blue Heron ( Juvenile) | March 12 | Alice Mary Herden

The photo above is one of two juveniles with one of the parents not far behind.

These are wading birds that forge for minnows, crayfish, and frogs on the edges of marshes and ponds.

Wading Bird. They can be found in both freshwater and saltwater areas, though more species tend to favor freshwater habitats. Bogs, marshes, mudflats, shorelines, ponds and flooded areas are all popular habitats for wading birds, and they can even be found in urban and suburban areas such as along golf course ponds. Source: https://www.thespruce.com/what-is-a-wading-bird-387103

Little Blue Heron ( Juvenile) | March 14 | Alice Mary Herden
Little Blue Heron ( Juvenile) | March 14 | Alice Mary Herden

So how to tell if you are seeing a Little Blue? Legs and beak… The legs are greenish and their beak has bluish tint color with a dark blue tip.


Links:

https://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/little-blue-heron

https://myfwc.com/wildlifehabitats/profiles/birds/waterbirds/little-blue-heron/

Black-crowned Night Heron

Recently in Tampa, Lettuce Lake Park has a great boardwalk for nature photographers and while observing the Black-crowned Night Heron, I learned something.

This is just an observation guess… notice what the bird does while its beak is in the water. My guess is that by gently snapping into the water creates a vibration which will bring fish or other species from underwater to the surface.

Pretty neat!

Jv.jpg
Juvenile Black-crowned Night Heron | Alice Mary Herden | January 2019

 


Links:

https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Black-crowned_Night-Heron/overview

https://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/black-crowned-night-heron