Heron the Great

Great Blue Coming at You
Great Blue Coming at You

No wonder the largest of North American herons received the honorable title of Great Blue Heron. Their wingspan can extend up to seven feet and their height four feet (that of an average seven-year old girl). Just watch them fly and the powerful whosh whosh pumping of their magnificent wings will leave you in awe. Surprise one and their voiced krrak will startle you!

Great Blue Heron at J. N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge

Great Blue Heron at J. N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge

Solitary hunters patiently standing by lake or stream, their elegance commands your admiration. Dressed in blue-gray plumage with accents of brown, white, and black their plumed head, neck and back speak of gatherings in high places. Breeding season calls them to unite in treetop colonies.

Great Blue Heron on the Prowl

Great Blue Heron on the Prowl

Great Blue Heron in the Everglades

Great Blue Heron Keeping Warm on a Cold Day

Hunter and hunted, only a little more than thirty percent of their young survive ascent to adulthood. From egg to adulthood, they are prey to raccoons, bears, eagles, hawks, turkey vultures, and even crows. Sensitive to environmental change, they adapt by finding new aquatic territories in which to pursue a variety of watery delicacies from their favorite, fish, to small mammals, amphibians, crustaceans, and insects. A good life will be lived into the mid-teens. As with all wild birds, habitat loss is a threat, but great blue herons thrive in healthy fresh and saltwater ecosystems.

Great Blue Heron

Great Blue Heron in the Everglades

What a splendid bird to admire and enjoy.

Great Blue Heron in Big Cypress National Preserve

Great Blue Heron in Big Cypress National Preserve

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7 thoughts on “Heron the Great

  1. Wow! Your pictures just get better and better. You’re so blessed to be able to see such a beautiful bird in it’s lovely habitat. I wish you could bring some of that lush green floliage and clear blue water up here!

  2. I see these beautiful birds all over my area. Lifting majestically in the sky. I think most people don’t pay them much attention as they are such an unobtrusive bird.

    I’ve been watching them over the last 30 years of my life and though many of the rookeries I could see as a kid are gone, they are still thriving in less inhabited and hard to get to places.

    You’ve captured the beauty and grace of the GBH in your photos.

    I’ll be in Orlando in two days…keep the weather warm and sunny for me!

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