Saturday, June 30, 2012

Perching in Trees

Something that seems a little strange is a great blue heron in a tree.  You don't think of them as a species that would hang out in trees.  Yet, they build their nests in trees, so it shouldn't seem all that unusual.  They are rather ungainly, however, when they do try to land in a tree and never seem quite comfortable perching on a branch. 

The fact that these two tolerate each other being so close tells me they are related either as mates or as parent and sibling because two unrelated herons would go to war if they got this close to one another this time of year.  They are in the trees because the tide was so high, the shoreline provided very few places to stand and fish.  The lower heron is using the opportunity to rest.  The upper heron is probably, in reality, fishing.  Great blue herons may not have "eagle eyes," but they do have excellent eyesight and I have been surprised at their ability to see fish from a distance. Notice the alert posture it has assumed as it looks out over the water.

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