Heron Rookery

Heron RookeryI learned recently of a heron rookery not far from my house. On Mothers’ Day, I drove out to see it… wanted to give the 100-400mm lens a little exercise. Turns out, I could have used an even longer lens; the nests are visible from the road, but not close to the road. Still, it was fun to watch the herons in action through binoculars, and I did get a few shots.

I watched the males struggle in nearby trees to select just the right branch with just the right leaves on it, then fly back to the nest to hand it to Mom – her Mothers’ Day gift.

A Mothers' Day Gift

This Mom took the branch and placed it just right in the nest. Her movements seemed awkward and cautious and I wondered if she already had eggs that she was stepping around.

As she fussed, Dad stood on a branch to watch.

Dad standing by

Look at his toes. How does he manage to hang on to that branch? It can’t be nearly as comfortable as walking in squishy mud looking for food.

Herons nest in colonies, so I watched this offering of the branch and careful placement more than once.

A branch for the nest.

This eager mom wasn’t nearly so careful accepting the offering and placing it in her nest.

Gimme that thing!

Dad says, “That’s how it’s done.”

Yes, Dear.

The rookery will be one of the destinations for Audubon’s Saturday (May 14, 2011) bird outing. Meet at Audubon at 7am to carpool. For a map and to learn more, click –> here.

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