Not Art Nbr 3: Brought to You by the Number Four

Chih-chih-chih… chih-chih-chih… chih-chih-chih… changes.

It’s not just a David Bowie song.

© Babsje (

Great Blue Heron and Four Chicks in Nest

It is music to my ears, the sounds of Great Blue Heron chicks in the nest: chih-chih-chih… chih-chih-chih… chih-chih-chih…

It was utterly absent at the nesting island during all of 2014. The Great Blue Herons had abandoned the nest last year.

In 2013 and 2012 the pair produced two chicks each year that successfully fledged from the nesting island.

For 2011, there were no chicks, and in 2010, they abandoned the nest and chicks due to human encroachment. (If the Heron Can Read This, You’re Too Close.)

The herons had a brood in 2009, nesting in a tree that came down during a storm between 2009 and 2010, but in 2008, there were no chicks.

I am moved beyond words that the plucky Great Blue Heron pair has reclaimed their nest on the island after the extreme weather of 2015, as if the 109 inches of snow this winter was a figment of our collective Boston-area imagination.

The 2015 brood of four nestlings is the largest at the nesting island in at least eight years.

And even though this photo isn’t art, the Great Blue Heron and her four nestlings are.


Thanks once again to Stewart Moncton for the Wild Bird Wednesday prompt.

Thanks to the kind folks hosting SkyWatch Friday.


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™

© 2015 Babsje. (

Great Blue Heron, Kayaking, Great Blue Heron Chicks

Posted on June 12, 2015, in ardea herodias, Art, Birds, Great Blue Heron, Kayaking, Nature, Photography, postaday, Skywatch Friday, Weekly Photo Challenge, Wild Bird Wednesday, Wildlife Photography and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 22 Comments.

    • Hi Margaret – Thanks for your kind comment, I’m glad you like this one. I was thrilled to see activity at the nest, and elated to see that there were four healthy-looking Great Blue Heron nestlings this year! Best, Babsje

  1. How wonderful! Hooray !!

  2. To see this heron family is a great sight! I wonder if you are Dutch because of the first part of your url? (I am Dutch)

    • Hi Jesh – Many thanks for visiting and your kind words about the heron family photo, glad you like it. You’re right – Babsje is indeed a Dutch name, but I am not. I am in the Boston area of the US. Best regards, Babsje

  3. elizabethweaver

    Gorgeous shot!

  4. Not much room in that nest.

    • Hi. Neil- yes, that was my initial reaction, too, however when viewed from a different angle, the nest is more oblong and is broader than it appears in the photo, but still I’m a bit concerned, too. Thanks for your good observation. Best, Babsje

  5. Wonderful heron family shot. A proud mommy.

  6. Yes, it’s a fantastic capture and I will see the announced artwork! Why? I’m a Artist too and my last Vernissage with pictures “Art for Bee’s” was Last year …

    Cheers, Heidrun

    My Sky is here, if you like…

  7. Aw! What a great find!

    • Hi Patti – Thanks so much, I was elated to see those healthy-looking nestlings, elated and surprised, so it was definitely a happy find! Best, Babsje

  8. what a great shot…those baby birds are so funny looking!!

  9. It’s good that such careful tabs have been kept on this nest. The spotty record tells us that we can’t make assumptions and that these herons will nest if they can – we just need to get out of the way so we’re not one more problem! 🙂

    • You are so right. We just need to get out of the way. Man truly is the apex predator to them – largely by destroying habitat and well-intentioned but misguided interference with nesting birds. That tiny nesting island supported only one pair of nesting Great Blues at a time and a pair of Cormorants in a symbiotic relationship, and I watched over the course of a decade as they nested in three or four tall trees in succession. This is the 2008-2015 array there

      A microburst in 2015 took down the tallest tree but the Herons found their way to nest there once more in 2016, and I easily counted 9 fledgling Herons in that area. What a joyous day that was.

  1. Pingback: Not Art Nbr 4: I Have No Words | Babsje Heron

  2. Pingback: Beautiful Great Blue Herons After the Storm (Not Art Nbr 10) | Babsje Heron

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