Friday, August 11, 2006


If you look in the lower middle of this photo, slightly to the left, you will see a Great Blue Heron. It's often seen in the small creekbed just past the lake dam near where we live. I've seen it many times but this is the first photo I've gotten. As I made my way forward to get a better, bigger image of the bird, it rose up on huge wings and took flight. Apparently it isn't very sociable! It's a very solitary bird, always just the one, although I have read of huge colonies of them.

Seeing the bird in flight is a wonderful experience, as it spreads its giant wings and soars upward. Which brings up the question of how fast can he fly? Two studies have measured these birds as having a cruising speed between 23 and 29 miles per hour.


Did you locate the Great Blue in the first photo?

Here is a cropped version showcasing the bird, with its distinctive "S" shaped neck. Again, he's on the left.

Sixty-nine percent of newborn Great Blue Herons die in their first year, although some have been known to live over 20 years.

Click here for a website with more information on Great Blue Herons.

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