There was so much bird activity in this marsh it was hard to know where to look. It was an experience to be taken in with a wide view, not for images of an individual bird.
The entire flock was feeding in shallow water and slowly working from my left to right. All of the birds would be down and mostly hidden from my view then several hundred would lift off and advance, setting down at the front of the group. They probably were following any remaining fish that were trying to escape.
This was one of the most remarkable displays I’ve witnessed while out photographing nature.
The wading birds included Wood Storks, Roseate Spoonbills, Great Egrets, Snowy Egrets, Tricolored Herons, White Ibis, and Glossy Ibis. There were a few Grackles in the mix, too.
There were hundreds of Wood Storks in the trees at the back of the field and in the rice field canals, most of them tucked down or just too far away for good images. This dead tree served as a perch for a small group of storks and couple stray White Ibis as they rotated in and out of the distant trees.
One or two would land and almost immediately on or two would ext the tree. This was another one of those natural happenings that seemed to have a secret signal.
There was another canal between me and this tree but that water didn’t seem appealing to any of the wading birds on this afternoon.
The fluffy white clouds were building up pretty quickly and provided a more interesting background than plain blue sky.
After a short break following his Balance Beam Routine this Roseate Spoonbill inspected the sides of his support.
I discovered when I processed these images that he was not alone. A Paper Wasp nest is tucked in the corner, a Great Blue Heron is peaking up from the marsh, and another GBH is lurking in the background.
This Black-crowned Night Heron flew over the marsh and then right in front of where Ted and I were standing. I was expecting him to veer off as he got closer as we were right out in the open, but he obliged us with a slow, steady flight.