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Posts Tagged ‘green heron’

As the seasons change, new birds appear and disappear at my favorite marshland park—Huntley Meadows Park—in Northern Virginia. We are fortunate to be along the migratory route for birds flying north and south and are far enough south to be a destination of some overwintering birds.

Unlike the Great Blue Herons, which remain with us all year, Green Herons (Butorides virescens) leave in the autumn and I eagerly await their arrival in the spring? Why? I am utterly fascinated by these squat little birds, despite the fact they have none of the elegance of the Great Blue Herons and Great Egrets. They always strike me as industrious and diligent and go about their work, generally avoiding the spotlight. Green Herons also seem to have an abundance of personality and almost seem capable of expressing emotions. Finally, Green Herons have a subdued, but refined beauty, a beauty that I was able to capture in this image from yesterday morning.

Welcome back, Green Herons. I missed you. Perhaps it is true that absence makes the heart grow fonder.

Green Heron

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Although I enjoy watching the Great Egrets and Great Blue Herons at Huntley Meadows Park, the much smaller Green Herons (Butorides virescens) are my favorites. Green Herons just seem to have an amazing amount of personality packed in their compact bodies.

I think they deserve to have a “Great” in their name too.

Green Heron

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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A Green Heron (Butorides virescens) was perched this morning on the raised edge of the boardwalk at Huntley Meadows Park, peering down into the murky water. Apparently the heron didn’t like what it saw, for it turned abruptly and decided to cross the boardwalk. I captured this shot as the heron was taking its first tentative step in the new direction.

Green Heron

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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I love watching Green Herons (Butorides virescens) stalk a prey. Their movements are so focused, cautious, and deliberate they appear to be moving in slow motion.

Like the Great Egret that I featured yesterday, Green Herons migrate out of my area during the fall and it is always exciting to welcome back these colorful little herons. Green Herons often are often hidden in the vegetation at water’s edge, but this one cooperated by moving along a log in the water as it tracked its potential prey. This particular hunt was not successful and shortly after I took this photo, the heron flew off to a more distant location.

Green Heron

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Against the wind, this Green Heron (Butorides virescens) looked like it was facing into a strong headwind and running against the wind early Monday morning at Huntley Meadows Park. In fact, the air was calm and the wind-blown, tousled look was merely a grooming choice by the heron as it prepared for the new day.

Green Heron

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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As I was preparing to leave work yesterday, one of my co-workers reminded me to wear something green today to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. Some people go a little crazy on this day, drinking green beer and consuming food that has been dyed to an unnaturally bright shade of green.

To celebrate the day, I thought I’d reprise a few photos of some of my favorite green creatures, including the Common Green Darner (Anax junius), the Green Heron (Butorides virescens), a green metallic bee, and little green frogs. If you are viewing the images in the blog itself (and not the Reader), click on any one of the photos to see a larger image in slide-show mode.

For those of you also celebrating St. Patrick’s Day, be safe and have fun.

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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WordPress tells me I posted 851 photos during 2015 in 395 blog posts. I’ve forgotten many of those photos, but I want to share ten of my favorites with you today as we start the new year.

I used a very unscientific approach in selecting them—I simply chose ones that I really liked without looking at numbers of likes or views or comments. So often I am focused on getting new shots that I sometimes forget how wide a spectrum of subjects I like to shoot. These images remind me of my varied approaches and techniques.

I didn’t include any of the fox photos or contest entries that I featured recently, figuring that you were already familiar with them. I should note that this selection of favorites is representative and not exhaustive—there are probably some awesome shots that I have neglected to include. I haven’t tried to put the images in any kind of rank order, but if forced to choose, my favorite image of the year is probably the first one, the Green Heron with a kind of Rembrandt lighting.

Thanks to all of you who have supported and encouraged me so much in 2015. Best wishes for a wonderful 2016.

Green Heron

Ebony Jewelwing

Great Spangled Fritillary

Banded Pennant

Green Heron

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail

Blue Dasher

Osprey

Bald Eagle

North American Beaver

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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