nesting herons

So this summer thus far has found me in the midst of home repairs and remodeling which has kept me away from weekend journeys with my camera. Imagine my surprise and humbling luck when I discovered a heron nest in my own backyard!

My best guess, based on what I’ve seen of them, is that it is a yellow-crowned night heron nest. I’ve spotted both the adults and what I believe to be at least one juvenile thus far. I discovered them at the start of the weekend and have been watching it and them and their extraordinary behaviors all weekend. To get such an intimate look into their habitat is quite intriguing and has inspired me to educate myself a bit more of the species and their nesting behaviors.

I am a fan of the great blue heron and living on the coast, I get to see them often. I had no idea, however, that there are over sixty species of heron found in various parts of the world. Upon researching more, I discovered that when it comes to the yellow-crowned night heron as well as the black crowned night heron, their young look a bit different which is what initially had me confused as to what I was seeing. The adult has a yellow stripe along its crown (hence the name) with a black head. Their bill is black, the eyes are red, and their body is gray. Juveniles, on the other hand, are brown with tiny white spots and have a black bill and will remain this way for their first year.

The early morning proved rewarding when I was able to witness the harrowing fall of one of the juveniles from the nest and find its wings. This did something to me watching the courage quietly forge between its wings and left a lasting memory.

I hope you enjoy the images I captured just as much as I did watching them.

into the great wide open…

under them skies of blue…

a rebel without a clue…

thank you for viewing! if you’d like to see more of my nature inspired photography, you can visit my instagram gallery here where I share random captures from my travels and my own backyard.

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