An American Bittern forages for an afternoon meal along the edge of the water where the colors of bird and marsh meld into one. Even the Bittern’s funky yellow-green legs seem to mirror the changing fall colors of the cattails along the ponds edge. Camouflage is a wonderful thing.
We sat and watched this Green Heron as they slowly moved along the river bank and while we could see them they maintained constant cover in a tangle of dead branches and roots. After about 20 minutes they flew out into the open and landed on this tangle of roots in the river.
Amazing birds in that they can use tools to catch fish.
“The Green Heron is one of the world’s few tool-using bird species. It often creates fishing lures with bread crusts, insects, and feathers, dropping them on the surface of the water to entice small fish.”
That would be something amazing to see and something to keep an eye out for next time you spend some time observing one.
Looking fine as can be in his breeding plumage a male Red-Breasted Merganser swims quietly along in the cattails confidant he will attract a mate.
“Courting males salute a female with head held high and then curtsy to the female by tipping up and putting their rear in the air with bill held high. In response to the male’s gesture, the female often jabs him with her bill. Courting males also shake their head side to side to get the attention of a female. Once the female accepts the male she stretches her neck out while holding her bill down and then lowers her neck again in a bobbing motion. They form a monogamous bond for the breeding season, but the male takes off at the beginning of incubation, leaving the female to tend the young alone. Males head to secluded waters to molt their feathers before migrating south while females tend to molt near the breeding site.” 1
1. The Cornell Laboratory of Orinthology, All about birds Website, https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Red-breasted_Merganser/lifehistory
Yellow: the most luminous color and one that always grabs our attention, even from a distance.
And on a cool and cloudy day this Little Yellow Warbler sure warms thing up.
With the grass greening up and water in the pond the frogs better keep their eyes open for this little hunter. A Snowy Egret works the ponds on a sunny spring morning.
It is never a dull moment when the White Faced Ibis are around. So full of color you just look and be in wonder. A full palette all in one bird. Truly amazing.
A little Pie Billed Grebe affectionately described by All About Birds as “Part Bird-Part Submarine” for their ability to quickly dive like a submarine when threatened. Luckily this one did not feel threatened and we were able to observe them swimming in this small river hunting for their morning meal.
An Adult Black Crowned Night Heron was quietly minding their own business standing silently and hunting in that patient Nigh Heron way. Then along came the Ibises probing and prodding right in front of the heron.
These two foraging styles were clearly incompatible and there heron quickly and elegantly took flight to find a quitter corner of the pond.
Leaving the Ibises to have this spot for their own.
While yesterdays post featured one of the smallest birds in North America todays trio of American White Pelicans features one of North Americas largest birds. We watched a large group of Pelicans lounging and preening on recent morning and this trio seemed right at the center of the action in addition to being full of personality to say the least.
A Female Red Winged Blackbird soaking up the morning sunlight while fresh spring leaves leaves wiggle their way out of the newly formed buds.