Great neighbor, the great blue heron

One of the many benefits of living in the lowcountry is the opportunity to observe the magnificent birds that live and visit here. I am always thrilled to catch a sighting of the Great Blue Heron, a graceful resident usually seen along the marsh shore.

Before choosing to write this piece I confess that I knew next to nothing about these birds, writing usually forces me to do a little research and I am always the wiser for it. There are numerous resources available online for anyone interested in identifying birds, to say nothing of the many books available at the library. I am not one the make resolutions, but this year I resolve to educate myself on the topic of our local birds.

What I learned about Great Blue Herons…..Known as a wading bird they feed primarily on small fish although I once was startled to see one choke down a good sized reptile. Sunrise and sunset are their preferred meal times. They can make loud croaking sounds but I haven’t heard one yet. One of the thirteen species of wading birds that nest in SC, it is the only species not in decline. Although they are what are known as a “solitary hunters” they nest in colonies with other Great Blue Herons, up in sturdy trees close to the shore. Of course there is lots more info on these beauties but I will leave that discovery up to the reader… me, I am now onto the Snowy Egret.

Happy Birding…

Article by Cindy Reid

 

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