Tag Archives: Feeding

Startled Wood Stork

I didn’t see this Wood Stork until he took off; he had been tucked up to the edge of the pond right in front of me. He was so close I didn’t get his full wingspan.

Wood Stork Flying Away
Wood Stork Flying Away

He didn’t go far, touching down at the edge of a channel.

Wood Stork Touching Down
Wood Stork Touching Down

He immediately started feeding.

Wood Stork Feeding
Wood Stork Feeding

The spot didn’t seem to satisfy him.

Wood Stork
Wood Stork

Pretty soon he took off for further down the pond.

Wood Stork
Wood Stork

 

Little Blue Heron Fishing

Back and forth, this Little Blue Heron was working the perimeter of a small pond.

Little Blue Heron Fishing
Little Blue Heron Fishing

We’ve had a tremendous amount of rain the last ten days and water is pushing up and even overflowing many pond edges, giving these birds the shallow water they prefer for hunting.

Little Blue Heron Fishing
Little Blue Heron Fishing

Add that it was a bit warmer and thousands of minnows were zooming around in the water and the Little Blue had a great hunting ground. Even with all that bounty he was slow and methodical, sticking to his process.

Little Blue Heron Fishing
Little Blue Heron Fishing

Success!

Little Blue Heron Fishing
Little Blue Heron Fishing

Great Egret Hunting in Swamp

This Great Egret was on his own as he hunted in a swamp were recent rains have left the water levels high around the edges.

Great Egret Hunting In A Swamp
Great Egret Hunting In A Swamp

Slow and methodical he went around a large tree, starting to show some fancy tail feathers of the approaching breeding season.

Great Egret Hunting In A Swamp
Great Egret Hunting In A Swamp

A big swallow…

Great Egret Hunting In A Swamp
Great Egret Hunting In A Swamp

…maybe it wasn’t what he was expecting… you don’t often see an Egret spit out food.

Great Egret Hunting In A Swamp
Great Egret Hunting In A Swamp

All good, he continued around the tree.

Great Egret Hunting In A Swamp
Great Egret Hunting In A Swamp

Magnolia Plantation and Gardens
February 8, 2021

Yellow-rumped Warbler On The Hunt

A very busy Yellow-rumped Warbler was zipping back and forth over the edge of a small pond.

Yellow-rumped Warbler
Yellow-rumped Warbler

He found small twigs to perch on between forays.

Yellow-rumped Warbler
Yellow-rumped Warbler

And then totally surprised me by landing in the water, which is much deeper than just to his ankles.

Yellow-rumped Warbler
Yellow-rumped Warbler

The carpet of vegetation, or perhaps a stick under the surface, was enough to hold up hisĀ  0.4-0.5 ounce (12-13 g) body while he poked in the water.

Yellow-rumped Warbler
Yellow-rumped Warbler

He got his treasure and skedaddled showing off his name-sake rump.

Yellow-rumped Warbler
Yellow-rumped Warbler

Carolina Chickadee on Sweet Gum Ball

From my research the seed balls of the Sweet Gum (or Sweetgum, depending on where you read) tree should be empty of seeds by mid fall.

Carolina Chickadee on Sweet Gum
Carolina Chickadee on Sweet Gum Seed Pod

Clearly this tree didn’t follow the program and several Carolina Chickadees were feeding in its upper branches on this mid-January day.

Carolina Chickadee on Sweet Gum
Carolina Chickadee on Sweet Gum

The dried pod stems are still quite sturdy, although this little bird doesn’t weigh much at 0.3-0.4 ounces (8-12 g) per All About Birds.

Carolina Chickadee on Sweet Gum
Carolina Chickadee on Sweet Gum

If you’ve ever touched one of these balls you’ll likely remember; those spikes are quite sharp.

Carolina Chickadee on Sweet Gum
Carolina Chickadee on swinging Sweet Gum seed pod

Fellow blogger Mike Powell has captured similar scenes in Virginia where there is overlap in both the tree and the bird, including his post Acrobatic Chickadee

 

Eagle: Fish for Dinner

In a new flight pattern this fall and winter, I’ve seen Bald Eagles flying over the pond with the Great Blue Heron rookery. A couple of weeks ago I saw one go by and about four minutes later one came back with a fish in his claws.

Bald Eagle Flying With Fish
Bald Eagle Flying With Fish

I can’t say for certain its the same bird but given their territorial nature it is likely, making that a pretty efficient dinner run.

Bald Eagle Flying With Fish
Bald Eagle Flying With Fish