Preening Heron Ardeidae Ardea herodias Great Blue Heron St Marks National Wildlife Refuge Walkulla County Florida

Great Blue Heron – St Marks National Wildlife Refuge

 

The aging plumes of a Preening Great Blue Heron Ardea herodias give the bird a shaggy appearance. "Great Blue Herons have specialized feathers on their chest that continually grow and fray. The herons comb this ‘powder down’ with a fringed claw on their middle toes, using the down like a washcloth to remove fish slime and other oils from their feathers as they preen. Applying the powder to their underparts protects their feathers against the slime and oils of swamps."1


1 Great Blue Heron. Identification, All About Birds – Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Web. 09 Apr. 2017.


camera: Nikon D3 | lens: AF Nikkor VR 400mm f/2.8G IF-ED
focal length: 400mm | exposure: f/5 – 1/2500th second – ISO 500

Reflection Ardeidae Ardea herodias Great Blue Heron St Marks National Wildlife Refuge Walkulla County Florida

Great Blue Heron – St Marks National Wildlife Refuge

A lone Great Blue Heron Ardea herodias provides a Reflection in tidal water of St Marks National Wildlife Refuge. Great Blue Heron numbers are stable and increased in the U.S. between 1966 and 2014, according to the North American Breeding Bird Survey.1


1 Great Blue Heron. Identification, All About Birds – Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Web. 09 Apr. 2017.


camera: Nikon D3 | lens: AF Nikkor VR 400mm f/2.8G IF-ED
focal length: 400mm | exposure: f/4.5 – 1/3200th second – ISO 500

Afternoon Sun Ardeidae Ardea herodias Great Blue Heron St Marks National Wildlife Refuge Walkulla County Florida

Great Blue Heron – St Marks National Wildlife Refuge

Afternoon Sun illuminates a Great Blue Heron Ardea herodias standing on an ismus in St Marks National Wildlife Refuge, Walkulla County, Florida. Great Blue Herons reside year-round on the Gulf Coast.1


1 Great Blue Heron. Identification, All About Birds – Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Web. 09 Apr. 2017.


camera: Nikon D3 | lens: AF Nikkor VR 400mm f/2.8G IF-ED
focal length: 400mm | exposure: f/5 – 1/2500th second – ISO 500