Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Feb 21, 2017: More Nest Building by Great Blue Herons

Yesterday was a bust -  good sun but watching the Great Blue Herons' nest building yielded nothing (for 2 hours).   Today I returned earlier (7:30) and though cloudy -  there was active fetch and toting construction materials by the males.  Also - it was a day of the herons - a little blue, a tricolor, little green and great blue.  Great day.




















Saturday, February 18, 2017

Feb 18 2017 Continuation of watching the heron nest building and baby making

Its Saturday and time to take the kayak out on Walden Lake to watch the Great blue herons do their mating thing.  The surprise today was that there are two nests in the big pine tree so I was able to watch two activities in action.  Along the way was a little blue heron - here


Here is the pine tree -  a mature nest in the center and a work-in-progress nest in the lower left

Dad great blue heron dropped by to pass twigs to mom


Here is dad passing a twig to mom


And here is mom carefully placing the twig in a critical part of her nest


She is holding the twig at the end of her beak


A video of nest making activity (oh sigh - none of the videos work - probably must post to YouTube and add a link)


The dynamics of nest building




Setting moon to the left of their tree homes



The female often stretches her next and points her beak up as if to signal her husband to take off and bring in some more construction supplies. He gets the message and begins his takeoff check list


He is about ready to depart


Hmm--  some last minute instructions


A video of nest building teamwork


Sunning


Watching over mom


This is the most fun part of watching the male takeoff and land without obstructions from the pine needles


Beautiful takeoff


For whatever reason he is flying into the forest


Here -  back to have a discussion with mom


The dynamics of discussion


This is the 2nd nest - a work in progress.  here she is picking pine needles and twigs


Reaching down to grab a twig


Success - a nice structural element


Another nice twig


The dynamics of harvesting and organizing her nest


The two nests


The little blue heron.  The advantage of a kayak is that these birds are not easily spooked so I can get pretty close - much closer than when I walk toward them