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Great Blue Heron

Pescadero is lovely!  I visited for the third week in a row.  This time we headed straight for the marshes.

The marshes are quite beautiful and you can find all sorts of birds there.  Today we saw a song sparrow, an egret, a turkey vulture, several red-tailed hawks, common mergansers, seagulls, swallows, and a great blue heron.  I also heard several chickadees and a very disgruntled crow.

We’re walking back along the trail to head home, and I see this big blue beast.
A great blue heron!  Look at his yellow eye.He was looking a bit scruffy, which is to be expected at the end of breeding season.  Great blue herons breed from March to May.

He wasn’t at all scared by us.  Instead, he watched us carefully and slowly walked off.  Great blue herons are four feet tall and have a six foot wingspan, so he has no reason to be intimidated by mere humans.
Below you can see the thickness of the marsh water.These marshes also include a breeding ground for the herons, called a rookery.  From a distance, it doesn’t look like much of anything.

But each of those gray spots is a nesting site.  They nest together to protect against predators.

I can’t wait to visit a rookery next spring; the noise made by up to 135 great blue herons is supposed to be quite remarkable.
In other news, I set a hummingbird feeder out awhile ago and a few days ago I saw a hummer drinking from it!  Success.

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