(Burrowing Owl Update Below)
I hadn’t seen a big heron since late October. Where did they go? And I almost didn’t see this one. Despite its size it managed to blend in rather well in the rubble on the south side of the Open Circle Viewpoint — so well that I totally missed it on my first approach, when it was probably sleeping. By the time I returned, it had started stirring. It opened its beak several times without making a sound. Yawning? Stretching? The bird took a long time to get moving, and this human observer’s clock was running, so I don’t know what it did next, but I imagine that looking for breakfast was top of its list.
The photos above date from December 18. This heron, or one like it, made itself visible in the park several times thereafter. I’ll have more images of it in the next few days.
Burrowing Owl Update
The Burrowing Owl remained at Perch B this morning around 9. Among the park visitors who had a chance to see it were three from Alaska. Possibly the bird came from there as well. In the 18 minutes that I let the camera run, the bird looked quiet, peering up and around now and then, but often shutting, or almost shutting, its eyes. The one-minute excerpt above gives a more or less typical glimpse into that slice of the bird’s time.