Bathing Heron

Before I start on my 2016 Birding Observations I wanted to post a series of shots I got last summer of a Great Blue Heron while at Burnaby Lake.

Great Blue Herons are pretty common in the area and they’re seen just about everywhere. So it was no surprise to see a Heron while checking in with the ducks at Burnaby Lake. He strolled purposely across the footpath, over towards the water.

Great Blue Heron
Taking a stroll

He didn’t go very far from the path, seeming unconcerned at having an audience. So I stuck around to get some close up shots of this beautiful creature. He seemed quite content and settled right in, which I had never seen a Heron do, usually when I see them they keep their bodies above the water.

Great Blue Heron
Ahh…this water feels nice.

It was a pretty hot summer so perhaps on this summer day he was just looking to cool down. As he sat in the water he started to puff out his feathers.

Great Blue Heron
Getting puffy

And then he did something a little unexpected, he totally immersed himself. This was new behavior I had not seen from the Herons, I mean I expect that from the crows and such but usually the Herons are so reserved and statuesque. Not this guy though … not today, he was thoroughly enjoying himself. That’s one thing I like about photography and bird watching is that you never know when you are going to capture something unique or unexpected.

Great Blue Heron having a bath
Going in neck first.

Thanks to his lack of shyness I captured lots of pics of him on that afternoon. This picture below was one of my favorites of the year (taken from my Flickr PhotoStream).

Looking determined


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