Mythical Siren Lures Canoe onto the Rocks

© Babsje (

The canoe birthday party crashes into rocks along the shore while approaching a great blue heron.

© Babsje (

The girl near the front of the canoe has her hand by her mouth in a universal gesture of alarm, while those behind her are watching the heron, oblivious to the man in front embedded in the bushes. The woman in the middle of the canoe continues to take photos of the heron with her red flip phone.

Could great blue herons have been mistaken for the Sirens of Greek mythology? In mythology, beautiful Sirens – part woman, part bird – lured sailors to their death on the rocks with their beautiful songs.

While they are magnificent birds, their calls – primarily a croaking “frawhnk,” sometimes a soothing “aarh…aarh…aarh,” and at others a soft “goo” – aren’t beautiful by any classical standard.

Nonetheless, the photos above show a canoe of birthday revelers crashing into the rocks, lured by a great blue heron (at bottom left in the top photo).

This week, Michelle W has challenged us with the concept of juxtaposition, and the photos here show a bizarre scene: the man paddling in the bow of the canoe has been embedded in shrubbery along the shore as the canoe is driven into the rocks. The girl seated behind him has her hand raised to her mouth in a universal gesture of alarm. The two at the front of the canoe are focused on the rocky, brushy shore, while the other four people at the back are oblivious, focusing on the beautiful great blue heron, instead. The two birthday hats create an odd, whimsical mood.

Nobody was injured in their low-speed crash, but it was definitely an incongruous scene.

And the woman with the red phone taking photos? A woman after my own heart: capture the heron photo at any cost, canoe crash be damned.


Thanks to Michelle W and WordPress for the Weekly Photo Challenge: Juxtaposition.


A selection of my heron and flower photos is now available at the Five Crows Gallery in Natick, MA. Drop in and see the work of the many wonderfully creative artists who show there when you’re in the area.

Five Crows is on FaceBook. To give the gallery a visit, please click here.

Remember: Walk softly and carry a long lens.™

The Tao of Feathers™

© 2014 Babsje. (

Great Blue Heron

Posted on January 25, 2014, in ardea herodias, Art, Bird photography, Great Blue Heron, Humor, Kayaking, Nature, Photography, postaday, Weekly Photo Challenge, Wildlife Photography and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. Yep, an utterly bizarre sequence. Well captured!

  2. The heron flies away going, “Ahhh, another crashed canoe to add to my collection, frawhnk!”

  1. Pingback: Weekly Photo Challenge: Juxtaposition (Lamp) | What's (in) the picture?

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