Why were the Great Blue Herons (Ardea herodias) prancing about on Saturday with their heads tilted upward and their wings displayed? Surely this was some kind of elaborate courting ritual.
As Tina Turner famously sang, “What’s love got to do with it?” Apparently this is how these herons defend their feeding territories. Really? According to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, one of my favorite sources of information on birds, “Great Blue Herons defend feeding territories from other herons with dramatic displays in which the birds approach intruders with their head thrown back, wings outstretched, and bill pointing skyward.”
If only we could be so dignified in expressing our differences instead of squawking loudly and aggressively at each other.
© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.