This past week, there was so much activity in our local wetland preserves that I decided to share just a few of my favorites. One highlight was the funny little Great Blue Heron chick featured above, one of several who have not yet fledged.
The nesting Great Egrets that I posted about a few days ago are among the most beautiful residents of late.
But there were many other special beauties, like these two Cattle Egrets above, at different stages of development, who were standing next to one another one day. They make quite the transformation from being a rather plain-looking, often rather comical bird, to become these stunning creatures glowing in the morning light.
If one goes birding in the early morning, just after sunrise, there may be a cloud cover that has not yet burned off.
The lighting might not be ideal, but I love the look of the Great Egrets against the sky anyway!
Another favorite who has begun to nest again in great numbers is the Tri-colored Heron. These birds somehow look much more imposing and powerful all of a sudden, in their courting plumage!
The non-wading birds were also very busy showing off for one another this week, like this pretty female Boat-tailed Grackle above, in soft browns, and her very flashy (and noisy) beau in iridescent blue!
An intriguing bird that has returned to nest here for at least the second year is this Leucistic female Boat-tailed Grackle. She is a real anomaly, as you can see when you compare her coloring with that of her female neighbor above. Here is what Sibley says about leucism (and related conditions), a curiosity I first learned about last year after seeing this bird. For more information, see also Cornell’s All About Birds.
There are still many Warblers and other small perching birds flitting about, too. I hesitate to label some of them as it would be very easy to be incorrect!
Hope these lovely little creatures help to brighten your day, as they do mine. I’m feeling blessed to be able to share their world~ Shabbat Shalom!