The two Black-crowned Night-heron nests I spotted at the beginning of May apparently failed as they disappeared shortly thereafter. There must have been at least one other nest in that little island as I almost literally bumped into this juvenile on Thursday standing on the nearby boardwalk.
He practiced rousing…
… and showed me his beautiful wings.
A little unsure of himself, he hopped along before taking off back to the island.
Further down the path I had a view of him perched on a dead branch hanging over the water.
As I got out of the car there was a din of red-winged black birds and grackles: loud and harsh. I looked up to see what they were up to and there was a gorgeous Black-crowned Night Heron looking back at me, probably wondering what all the fuss was about.
This tree sits on the edge of the dike where I’ve recently been watching the White Pelicans, Wood Storks, and Eagles in the rice field pond. The Black-crowned Night-Heron sat there quite awhile watching too, giving me an excellent view of his red eye.
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.