Even though we are seeing a lot of flower color around the swamp the trees are still mostly dull grey and brown. The island where this Great Egret took off has a few green palm trees which gave this flight shot some color.
As he flew over the open water the background wasn’t nearly as interesting so I edited it to be darker, giving a nice view of the Egret’s wing tips and layers.
As he approached his destination, a tree closer to the edge of the pond, the Egret started to pull up for landing.
The final glow of the sun shining on the trees at the far side of the pond cast an orange glow on the water. The Great Blue Herons were still making trips into the woods to get nest building materials.
I’ve watched several Forster’s Terns the last few times I’ve been to the rice field impoundment. They are incredibly acrobatic in flight, twisting and turning, then swooping down to the water to go after small fish.
They are quite striking birds, even in non-breeding plumage. When they’ve make the turn and loop back for another run at the pond is the best opportunity to photograph them.
And did I mention they are fast? This is the best I got this day for a dive.
If they pick up a small fish with their feet they quickly pass it to their mouth and down the hatch it goes.
I spotted this juvenile Bald Eagle circling the rice field pond a couple of times, then he put his feet down. I thought I was going to capture a landing.
He changed his mind! A pair of adult Eagles use this area daily, and generally the juveniles are not welcome to share. I waited and watched thinking maybe one of them was approaching. If so, I did not spot it.
Junior circled the pond one more time then landed in a pine tree further down the edge of the pond. If I hadn’t seen him land I wouldn’t have known he was there. He stayed put for longer than I stood waiting for him to make another move.
Great Egrets spend a lot of time standing and watching. Occasionally one in a group decides to relocate; this one took a loop over the pond. There were a number of Alligators and Vultures sunning along the bank.
The bank slopes up to one of the dikes we often walk on and there is another canal just on the other side.
This Great Egret kept on going over the dike and down into the marsh on the other side.