Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Pic of the Day

    Tri-colored Heron – Saint Augustine, Florida:  The Saint Augustine alligator farm is far from the Florida wilds, but it is a great place to photograph wild birds.  Each spring a variety of egrets and herons descend upon the popular tourist attraction to build nest and raise young on natural ponds at the farms periphery.   
     This Tri-colored Heron was photographed nesting only a few feet from the boardwalk that winds through the rookery.  As I walked along the board walk on an early April morning I found these two heron perched atop a freshly built nest.  The two birds seem especially attentive to one another as I watched,  then female stood over the nest, and with out warning an egg popped from the female and plopped into the nest.  The male bird seemed almost prideful as he looked at, and slightly moved the egg around with his bill.  I had never witnessed a bird laying an egg before and was quite surprised to see that the heron stood over the nest letting the egg fall about ten inches instead of setting in the nest to lay the egg.  Nature continues to amaze me, and the boardwalk that traverses the rookery at the Saint Augustine Alligator Farm provides a close-up intimate view of nature at its best.  
     The prime time to visit the rookery is early spring, usually between April 1 and May 31.  For more information on the Alligator Farm, the bird rookery and updates visit: http://www.alligatorfarm.com

Nikon F4, Nikkor 300mm 2.8, Kodachrome 64

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