Green Herons soon to be hunting on their own.

It this heron a bit of a narcissist or looking for fish to spear (8/6/13).

When I checked on our green herons this past Tuesday morning (8/6) I found one leaning over a branch of its birth tree staring down at the water. Was the bird admiring its reflection or was it feeling the urge to hunt? I suspect it was watching for little minnows and tadpoles in the water below, although I could be wrong.

As I walked the boardwalk to the other side of the tree its sibling was peacefully perched and staring out at the swamp, perhaps wondering where momma or poppa was with some semi-fresh grub.

One of the nestlings from nest 1 taking in the wetlands before it.

Later that same day I saw both nest mates staring into the water. I can’t help but to think that they will soon be hunting on their own.

“I’m tired of waiting, there must be a way to catch one of those shiners down there?”

Although the birds still show much down in their plumage it’s quickly being replaced by their first group of “real” feathers.

This bird from nest one is beginning to look more like its parents each day. I think I can even see some green feathers there! (8/9/13)

By the end of the week, on a hot and very humid afternoon, both herons from nest 1 were resting in the shade, but still carefully watching the water.

Taking to the shade on a very hot afternoon (8/9/13).

How are the nestlings in the second nest faring, the nest over by the Wetlands Overlook? Several days behind nest 1 in development the birds are starting to spend more time off the nest exploring the willow tree they were hatched in.

These two nestlings are out exploring the willow tree of their birth (8/6/13).
Although comfortable exploring their nest tree, they still return to the nest (8/6/13).

Towards the end of the week I had to really strain to find the birds among the tangle of willow branches.

There are three birds in this view (8/9/13).
This bird from nest 2 looks ready to go, at least in spirit (/8/9/13).

Things are looking good for our Green Herons.

4 responses to Green Herons soon to be hunting on their own.

  1. Wendy says:

    So exciting, Greg! What cute fluff balls. You capture the wetland dramas so wonderfully.

    • Greg Dodge says:

      Thanks, Wendy!
      I’m only sorry that I’ll miss this week’s action. The birds change so quickly at this age.

  2. Judy Overby says:

    Greg, your photos are incredible! Can you tell me the approximate distance from where you were shooting to the subjects. What mm lens were you using? Thanks!

    • Greg Dodge says:

      Judy, I was using a point and shot Panasonic Lumix FZ40 with a lens that stretches out to 32X. Each nest is only about 30-40 yards away. Imagine if I had used a nice DSLR w/600 mm lens, what images could I have gotten then?!

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