The big pond at Donnelley Wildlife Management Area is dotted with these little islands covered with clumps of marsh grasses. Maybe not quite technically hummocks, as I’m not sure the ground is in a mound or if the grass is just thriving in a clump.
It’s not uncommon to see Black-crowned Night-herons tucked into the grass, but on this cold day they were joined by a Great Egret and a Double-crested Cormorant was bobbing in the water. I couple other Night Herons came and went while I was watching.
Look closely and those little blurs are Swallows zipping through the air. By 11:30 AM it had warmed up enough for insects to be active at the water surface.
This was the scene under the Spoonbill Tree at Donnelley Wildlife Management Area on a recent cold and windy morning. The Roseate Spoonbills were wisely at the back of the pond, tucked under a bigger tree.
A few Gallinules were popping in and out view and the Great Blue Heron seemed on the verge of doing something as he repositioned several times.
The GBH moved back into the water when a Great Egret appeared. This dead tree, which has been a great perch for a Roseate Spoonbills over the last few years, has taken another step towards its end as another good size limb has fallen off this winter.
I was expecting the Heron to drive off the other birds the way he came back around the front of the island all puffed up.
But he decided to ignore whatever was going on behind him at least for the moment, as one lone gull paddled by.
Busking not as in a street performance, but a threat display or the same posture used for “wind-assisted transportation” per Wikipedia.
The wind assist was not something I’ve seen described elsewhere, but there was a stiff breeze this day. Two Mute Swans were traveling the length of this 600 foot (185M) long pond in no time, so it would not surprise me.
A water performance and no tips expected, the Mute Swans at Middleton Place were very entertaining.