Beautiful Great Blue Heron Gets Lucky

Great Blue Fledgling Sticks His Landing - babsjeheron © Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron Fledgling Sticks The Landing – babsjeheron

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Great Blue Heron With Pickerel Weed - babsjeheron © Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron With Pickerel Weed – babsjeheron

Boat traffic was ominously heavy that morning at the lake.
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Old Blue the kayak and I had put in later than usual, and it was dismaying to see motor boat after motor boat cruising down the channel towards us.
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Great Blue Heron Territorial Display - babsjeheron © Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron Territorial Display – babsjeheron

Their wakes were tricky to navigate in a 15 foot kayak.
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Everyone seemed in a hurry to reach their favorite spots.
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The water churned from boat wakes crashing at me from different directions simultaneously.
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I was feeling the way the Great Blue in this image looked.
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Young osprey perched amid pinecones  - babsjeheron    © Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Young Osprey perched amid pinecones – babsjeheron

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One boat rushed by to my left, very nearly swamping me in Old Blue.
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So much for seamanship and courtesy.
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An Osprey watched us from high above.
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Great Blue Heron Camouflaged - babsjeheron © Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron Camouflaged – babsjeheron

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The adults in the speeding boat were all facing forward, chatting away.
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But the young boy sitting in the back was facing aft.
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© Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron preening Columbus Day weekend – babsjeheron

Facing aft and silently pointing as he caught my eye.
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And then it dawned on me.
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The boy was directing my attention to the beautiful Great Blue Heron perched on the branch just above the water to my right. How lucky I was.
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Great Blue Heron lands a large fish - babsjeheron  © Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron lands a large fish – babsjeheron

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Thanks to the young boy’s keen eye, I was able to take many Great Blue Heron photographs that day.
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Until he pointed out that Great Blue, I was discouraged by how crowded things were on the water.
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Great Blue Heron carrying large Pike - babsjeheron  © Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron carrying large Pike – babsjeheron

And I had considered turning the kayak around for home.
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Instead of leaving, I was able to watch this Great Blue catch the ginormous Pike.
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How lucky I was.
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Great Blue Heron catching prize fish - babsjeheron  © Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Pteradactyl catching prize fish – babsjeheron

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You can read the story of Great Blue Heron’s Jaw-Dropping Day with a Fisherman CLICK HERE.
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How lucky she was.
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Great Blue Heron Swallows Two-foot Long Fish  © Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

How about a round of applause for this plucky Heron for swallowing the huge Pike? – babsjeheron

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You can read the story of the Epic Great Blue Heron Swallows Ginormous Fish CLICK HERE.
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How lucky she was..

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Van fully engulfed in flames on road next to boathouse on Columbus Day weekend - babsjeheron © Babsje (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Van fully engulfed in flames on road next to boathouse on Columbus Day weekend – babsjeheron

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This was also the day the boathouse caught fire, and a few hours later, an heroic boater saved the life of the Great Blue Heron shown in today’s photos.
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You can read the story of the Happy Ending to Beautiful Great Blue Heron Rescue CLICK HERE.
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Thanks to him, this Heron was lucky to be alive!
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How very lucky she was!

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This post is prompted by Cee Neuner, Dawn Miller and the creative and inspiring Lens Artists Tina, Amy, Patti, and Leya, all of whom encourage the community of photographers and writers.

The focus for this week’s LAPC is The Ordinary. This week, the Lens Artists have invited blogger I.J. Khanewala here as guest host. Welcome I.J.!

The day shown in my post, Columbus Day – now Indigenous Peoples’ Day – started out as an ordinary holiday day at the lake. The second Monday in October is the traditional closing day for the boathouse for the year.

Please click the links below to see the beautiful offerings from these wonderful photographers.
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Thanks to Cee for her Hunt for joy. I don’t know if this challenge is still on, but I really like the idea of searching for joy. The Herons bring joy.
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Thanks to Dawn for her Festival of Leaves . Autumn leaves are subtly reflected in the Preening Heron photo.
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From I.J. Lens Artists Weekly Photo Challenge 169: The Ordinary .
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From Patti Lens Artists Weekly Photo Challenge 169: The Ordinary .
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From Tina Lens Artists Weekly Photo Challenge 169: The Ordinary .
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From Amy Lens Artists Weekly Photo Challenge 169: The Ordinary .

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From Leya Lens Artists Weekly Photo Challenge 169: The Ordinary .

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Folks, now that some areas are opening back up, please consider supporting your local Arts communities – whether music, theater, crafts, visual arts venues, and others. All have been impacted over the past year and they need your love.

My brick & mortar presence in Massachusetts dates back to 2009 in several local venues/galleries.

TCAN – The Center for Arts Natick
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Natick Town Hall
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Five Crows Gallery in Natick
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Audubon Sanctuary
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Be a fly on the wall! You can CLICK HERE to see the gallery walls with Herons .
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Remember: Walk softly and carry a long lens.™

May the Muse be with you.™

The Tao of Feathers™

© 2003-2021 Babsje. (https://babsjeheron.wordpress.com)

Great Blue Heron, Kayaking, TCAN, Five Crows, Natick

Posted on October 12, 2021, in # Lens-Artists, ardea herodias, Birds, Festival of Leaves, Fishing, Heron, Nature, Photography, Wildlife Photography and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 45 Comments.

  1. Boy,you won’t be forgetting that day any time soon Babsje! So many things going on and you got world winning shots out of it! A true measure of grace under pressure!
    To take wildlife pictures requires far more than just a camera!

  2. Great photos and perseverance. Glad you and the heron are okay!

  3. Great pictures! They are really something to watch especially when they swoop down to catch a fish!

  4. These photos are superb 😀 😀

  5. A dramatic story! Beautiful shots of the survivor!

  6. Talk about a big swallow of a big fish. Pikes can be quite big. 🙂

    PS – Sent you an email.

    • Hi David. Many thanks! You’re so right about how big Pikes can be. It took that Great Blue over 35 minutes to down the Pike. I wouldn’t have thought swallowing a fish that large possible if I hadn’t observed with my own two eyes! And thanks also for the heads-up to check email. Best, Babsje

  7. Clearly a not-so-ordinary-day after all Babsje! Lovely images. I remember the story of the ex-policeman you met after the fire. Quite a terrific encounter!

  8. A dramatic story – beautiful shots of the survivor!

  9. It amazes me how those large fish go down that seemingly thin gullet.

    • Hi Dawn. It amazes me as well. Plus the length of that Pike must surely extend the entire length of the bird’s throat. They do a twisting movement when they turn their neck and head sharply to one side and then to the other side to help force the fish downward through the throat that was effective for this Great Blue and Pike. Sometimes it doesn’t work. Many thanks for your kind comment and for hosting Festival of Leaves. Best, Babsje

  10. The first photo is so amazing. I love the moments of landing and take off. The light is amazing in the photos of the heron fishing.

    • Hi I.J. Thanks so much for your kind thoughts. The Golden Hour backlighting in the photo where the Heron caught the huge fish was entirely the result of being in the right place at the right time, nothing I could have anticipated. I’m glad you like the photo of the Heron landing. I love how they stretch their feet forward to get a purchase on the landing surfaces. Best, Babsje

  11. These actions images are incredible. I’m in awe! GBH had a great day. Sorry to hear about the boat and house were on fire…

    • Hi Amy. Thanks so much for your generous compliment! That day started out like a very ordinary Columbus Day holiday and then things got very exciting! I’m glad you like the Herons. Best, Babsje

  12. Great captures, Babsje. That first photo is amazing! What a lovely, serendipitous morning!

  13. Ahh. You are the quin·tes·sen·tial authority. Beautiful.

  14. Love the images.
    Boathouse fire is scarring!
    What lens you use for bird photography?
    Curious!
    Thank you my friend.

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