The Heron

It has been cooling in the afternoon, and six p.m. hikes have become a wonderful reward when I can get away from the writing and grading papers. It was towards the end of such a hike last week when we came across this Great Blue Heron. I stopped to let Sandy cool off in the pool running over from one of the brackish creeks at Oleta River State Park. I looked up and saw the heron:


I was worried Sandy would give chase, as she does sometimes around stilt-legged wading birds. But she just watched, uninterested in leaving the cool water to chase anything. I was able to snap a photo before we walked on, leaving the heron undisturbed, without one harsh croak warning us that we were getting too close. I always hate when they scwakkk and yakk at me because I feel like I’ve dropped down in a spacesuit to step right through the middle of their universe.

Dragonflies are exquisitely equipped for hunting, capturing, and eating insects, including mosquitoes and blackflies, but they have their share of predators that hunt them. Here was a Great Pondhawk Dragonfly that landed for a few moments on a pine.

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