Monday, October 15, 2012

A Fishing Heron


This guy had a lot of nerve. He came right up to the deck at the pond at Sholom Park where a family was throwing pieces of bread to the Koi, which would then thrash about, fighting madly for a bread crumb at the top of the water. The heron watched carefully. When it saw a Koi taking too long at the surface, he lunged and had that Koi down his throat in a matter of seconds. Then, he'd return and wait for another victim to take too long going deep. I've found herons to be very skittish, but I could have reached out and touched this guy1 This reminded me of a video I saw recently where a heron would actually take a piece of bread in its beak, drop it in the water, and wait for a fish to take the bait and then, of course, the fish was history. Obviously, the heron had a functioning brain, for it had carefully planned its fishing procedure. And that fishing procedure was much more successful than just "sit and wait."

31 comments:

cieldequimper said...

Did that heron go to business school I wonder? ;-)

It all goes to show that you have to adapt and be creative...

Olivier said...

Magnifique portrait , il est vraiment tres beau

Tim said...

Wonderful capture Lowell. Right place at the right time...and probably no zoom either!!

Linda said...

Wow! Absolutely stunning captures, Lowell! I love these!

hamilton said...

did the family notice they were contributing to the herons dinner?

Kay said...

Beautiful shots!

I've only seen herons fish naturally, without the help of humans. . .who shouldn't be feeding the animals anyhow. (Is bread part of a natural koi diet? I think not.) There's a reason for "Please don't feed the animals" signs. Really.

Judy said...

Those pictures are just the best I have ever seen of a heron. The top one is so great. How fun to get to see this little slice of nature unfold.

EG CameraGirl said...

Hey, the heron was definitely thinking here. Someone else was throwing bread into the water getting those expensive koi to come up to the surface...then ZAP!

Memphis MOJO said...

I didn't know that birds were that intelligent. Nice series.

Ash said...

Wow...stunning!

Randy said...

And he looks like he's very serious about it too.

RedPat said...

Maybe 'birdbrain' shouldn't be an insult! He's quite a handsome guy as well as smart.

Jack said...

Nice photos, Lowell. Today I watched a bunch of geese and ducks and one heron. Folks were throwing a lot of bread for the ducks and geese, but the heron just stood there. We got the one who flunked B-school.

Jack said...

Autocorrect changed geese to geezer. How does Apple know?

Danielle said...

These are beautiful!!! The color is amazing...herons are my most favorite birds because of their incredible eyes...them and the cormorant. I'll have to take a trip by the park again soon ;)

Halcyon said...

I love herons. Glad to see you're back! I hope to have more time to blog in the coming days. :)

Bibi said...

If he just wolfed down a koi, I wouldn't touch him, with that beak...ouch, my eye.

Great shots.

llandudnopictures said...

Magnificent!

Dave-CostaRicaDailyPhoto.com said...

Great photos.

I love your comment about your mother's Burma Shave lyrics on the Prescott, Arizona Daily Photo site today.

Sharon said...

Wow, these are great shots. His hunger must have been stronger than his sense of caution.

Sharon said...

By the way, loved that Burma Shave story you posted on my sister's site.

Karl Demetz said...

The first photo is stunning!
Wonderful portrait!!!

ArtandArchitecture-SF.com said...

These photos are just gorgeous! I love the story, you are right, they must be highly intelligent feeders.

Cezar and Léia said...

He is gorgeous! I'm not brave to try to touch this gorgeous bird, but I would stay there for hours appreciating his beauty!
Léia

Lea said...

Beautiful! Especially the close up :)

SRQ said...

Wonderful shots. And what a clever bird! I've never seen one do that before.

magiceye said...

Amazing!

longbeachpeninsuladailyphoto said...

What stunning photos!

longbeachpeninsuladailyphoto said...

What stunning photos!

JM said...

Fantastic shots, Lowell, and what a story! Animals never cease to amaze me, well, nature in general.

David Thomas said...

Lovely photos of a cool bird!

"Photographers deal in things which are continually vanishing and when they have vanished there is no contrivance on earth which can make them come back again." — Henri Cartier-Bresson