8th December 2018

I love watching the Heron skulking in the reeds, or taking off on the unique, lazy, m-shaped flight which you might watch on any wetland, estuary, or on the lake in your town park, transforming from a static shadowy, hunched form, unfolding

Heron

Heron

Heron

Heron

to an elegant, airborne giant in seconds. In Greek mythology Herons were thought of as bringers of bad luck. Heron’s feed in shallow water, and the Greeks realised this meant their presence would reveal, to enemies, the shallow crossing places they could use to invade.                         Herons used to appear on upper-class menus, as this recipe from the 1400’s shows: “Take a heron…serve him…scalding and drawing and kuttyng the bone of the nekke away, and let the skyn be on…roste….his sause is to be mynced with pouder of ginger, vynegre and mustard”. Thankfully, they (and we) are now protected from this practice! Conditions: A bright morning becoming grey and very wet. Temperature: Max 9 Min 7C.

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9th May 2015

Last of the Heron mini-drama! Watching the juvenile Heron the other day I wondered why it’s head suddenly went up and it started croaking– then it’s crest went up in alarm and it took off, and into my view hove a large mature adult which afterwards chased the younger Heron right off the pond. Here are the photo’s. Conditions: After hours of very heavy rain late yesterday it is mostly dry with a few sunny intervals today. Temperature: Max 12- Min8 c.

First the young Heron croaks aggressively

First the young Heron croaks aggressively

Then up goes its crest and the wings are spread

Then up goes its crest and the wings are spread

In a display of submission it takes off

In a display of submission it takes off, crest still raised

Here's why- the dominant adult Heron usurps its feeding patch

Here’s why- the dominant adult Heron usurps its feeding patch