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Great Blue Heron | by ship rock
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Great Blue Heron

A juvenile of course, judging from that unkempt nose - poor thing hasn't learned yet how to keep its nose clean. And then there is the other evidence too: brown colour, dark crown, absence of white face, absence of shaggy neck plumes, and the sharp unworn and unused bill.

 

But juvenile or not, one of the World's three largest herons - 46" long, 72" wingspan, 4.5 lb.

 

Adults have quite attractive, well kept, slate-gray feathers. Also, they have a very distinctive style in flight - with slow, deep, deliberate wing beats - and along the shoreline, a very distinctive long stride.

 

Nest: platform of sticks and twigs in tree tops; sometimes a single pair of adults; often times, colonies. One brood: 3 eggs, pale blue; incubation 28 days, fledging 10 weeks. Since incubation starts when the first egg arrives, hatching occurs over the course of days and chicks differ in size, in strength and in ability to claim title to the lion's share of the predigested food that the parents regurgitate for them. Parenting is shared - males generally tend to the nestlings during the day; females during the night.

 

Food: small fish - stickleback, sculpins, perch, gunnels - shrimp, crabs, amphibians, reptiles, small birds.

 

Click on image for the larger view.

 

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Uploaded on June 8, 2018