Category Archives: Wading Birds

Three Hungry Egrets

Three Great Egret chicks worked to get food from the parent that has just returned to the nest. The chicks’ pulling on the adult’s beak stimulates regurgitation.

Great Egret with Three Chicks
Great Egret with Three Chicks

This time it didn’t seem to produce anything and the adult’s neck had an odd kink in it…maybe what he just ate wouldn’t come back.

Great Egret with Three Chicks
Great Egret with Three Chicks, watched by younger chick in the nest above

They gave it another try. If there was any food produced it was pretty small. These chicks’ beaks are nearly as big as the adult’s, and look as sharp.

Great Egret with Three Chicks
Great Egret with Three Chicks

The adult flew off leaving the chicks to chew on each other.

Three Great Egret Chicks
Three Great Egret Chicks

Great Egret Chicks: Three New Rookery Residents

Great Egret chicks are continuing to hatch around the rookery and these are three of the youngest I saw on Tuesday.

Great Egret with Chicks
Great Egret with Chicks

Clearly not very strong, these chicks were moving around and interacting with each other: poking, chewing, and leaning on each other.

Great Egret with Chicks
Great Egret with Chicks

At this age they aren’t active for very long at a time and one of them, probably the youngest, flopped over on his side well before the other two.

Great Egret with Chicks
Great Egret with Chicks

That Had to Hurt

Side by side in the nest, minding their own business, these two Great Egret chicks just couldn’t sit still any more. At least one of them couldn’t.

Great Egret Chicks
Great Egret Chicks

First it looked like brotherly hug.

Great Egret Chicks
Great Egret Chicks

Then, WHAM, I got you!

Great Egret Chicks
Great Egret Chicks  –  zoom in to see the inside end of the wing feathers

And again!

Great Egret Chicks
Great Egret Chicks

Back to minding their own business. No blood in evidence.

Great Egret Chicks
Great Egret Chicks

I Can Fly

I’d been watching the nest with three Great Blue Heron chicks off and on for a half hour and one of the chicks was getting more adventurous.

Great Blue Heron Chicks
Great Blue Heron Chicks

The other two were content with their wingercizing but this one was thinking about the big one.

Great Blue Heron Chicks
Great Blue Heron Chicks

The other two looked on curiously, but were not interested in joining in.

Great Blue Heron Chicks
Great Blue Heron Chicks

I looked away to check out some Anhinga chick squawking and it had happened! I couldn’t spot him at first, expecting that he’d have gone to the right. Instead he had flapped up to a branch about 15 feet away.

This got his siblings’ attention and they gave him the once over when he returned to the nest a few minutes later.

Great Blue Heron Chicks
Great Blue Heron Chicks

Sibling Spat

I heard them way before I got to the swamp: they were squawking the way they do when a parent has brought food. Instead of feeding, the scene when I got there was more like a human telling his sibling what’s what.

Great Blue Heron Chicks
Great Blue Heron Chicks

You could practically hear “You’re not the boss of me!”

Great Blue Heron Chicks
Great Blue Heron Chicks

I’m not sure if this was backing down or just requisitioning.

Great Blue Heron Chicks
Great Blue Heron Chicks

And as is often the case with humans, it was all over a couple minutes later, apparently with no harm done.

Great Blue Heron Chicks
Great Blue Heron Chicks

A lone adult, perhaps from this nest, stood with a tired look at the edge of the pond. The adults all around the rookery are starting to look like they have had enough.

Great Blue Heron Adult
Great Blue Heron Adult

Late Bloomer: Great Blue Heron Chick

This single Great Blue Heron chick has gotten a rough start in life and hasn’t seemed to be thriving as well as those in nearby nests. On my most recent pass by his nest he was up doing some wingersizing, which is a hopeful sign.

Great Blue Heron Chick
Great Blue Heron Chick

The adult wasn’t paying him any attention, which isn’t unusual, but without any siblings to interact with he’s got to poke at his parents once in awhile.

Great Blue Heron Chick
Great Blue Heron Chick

This nest is in the same tree as the multiple Great Egret nests. This fellow’s next challenge will be to fend off those chicks and their parents once they notice he is there. Last year the GBH chicks in this nest hatched much earlier than the Great Egret chicks so they had more of a size advantage.  And there were two of them.