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Posts Tagged ‘Ardea alba’

Great Egrets (Ardea alba) always seem to me to be a little vain and self-centered—maybe if comes from being so beautiful and graceful. This one did not like being ignored, so it decided to photobomb my shot of a deer this past weekend at Huntley Meadows Park .

Great Egret

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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The Great Egret (Ardea alba) was beautiful in the bright sunlight. Its wingspan was impressive and its flight was graceful as it took to the air.

Yes, the takeoff indeed was great.

Great Egret

Great Egret

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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This Great Egret (Ardea alba) seemed to be trying to minimize energy expenditure in the heat as it flew low and slowly from one location to another part of Huntley Meadows Park. The recent extreme heat must be tough on many of the inhabitants of the park—temperatures yesterday soared to 101 degrees (38 degrees C) in the Washington D.C. area, a new record for the date.

I have a tendency to crop my images to emphasize the subject, but I took these shots at pretty long range and like the way that they give you a sense of the environment at my favorite marshland park.

Great Egret

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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A Great Egret (Ardea alba) and a Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias) started goofing around yesterday at Huntley Meadows Park when I was trying to take their photo together—I think they are great friends. They looked like they were posing for a selfie.

I cropped the image to a square to make it easier for them to post to their Instagram pages.

great friends

 

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Every spring I look forward to the return of the elegant Great Egrets (Ardea alba) to our area. Unlike Great Blue Herons, which are with us throughout the winter, the egrets migrate south and return only in mid-spring when the weather has warmed up a bit.

One of the highlight of egrets at this time of the year is their beautiful breeding plumage and the green lores (the area between the bill and eye). When I spotted an egret grooming itself in the early morning, I was able to capture a sense of the long additional plumes that it was sporting.

Great Egret

Unlike Great Blue Herons, which patiently wait for a big catch, this Great Egret at Huntley Meadows Park seemed content with a series of small bites. I think that it is a little fish, but I am not entirely certain what the egret is consuming as a snack.

Great Egret

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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When watching birds, I usually have my camera’s zoom lens fully extended. On rare occasions I am actually zoomed in a little too closely, as was the case when I took the shot of a Great Egret (Ardea alba) this past Monday at Huntley Meadows Park.

Despite the clipped wings, I love the details and the beautiful arc of the feathers of its wings as this stunning bird takes to the air.

Great Egret

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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How do you capture the details of a pure white bird as it flies in an out of the light? That was my challenge this past weekend when I tried to photograph Great Egrets (Ardea alba) at my local marshland park.

Many of my past shots of egrets have been unsuccessful, usually because they are overexposed and the highlights and details are blown out. I’ve tried using exposure compensation with only minimum success.

This time, I remembered to switch to spot metering and had greater success. Sure, the backgrounds are a bit underexposed, but I think that the darkness helps the highlight the beauty of the egret.

Great Egrets seem a little awkward when in the water, but when they take to the air, it’s like watching a ballet.

Great Egret

Great Egret

Great Egret

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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