by Bryce W. Robinson
I first met the Great Blue Heron as a boy, in the fields of Ithaca, New York. This large bird is solely responsible for my interest in the entire avian world. I spent the remainder of my childhood drawing the Great Blue Heron over and over. Many birders and ornithologists alike have similar stories, each with their own bird. The Great Blue Heron is my bird, and will forever be special to me.
I have never been able to come away with any decent photos of my favorite bird. Although common, they are rather shy. The other day I went to a wetland near the California coast. Bolsa Chica is a large reserve of estuaries near Huntigton Beach. I walked through the reserve birding, finally coming upon a very tolerant heron. I couldn’t believe how relaxed it was, as I was standing only fifty feet from the bird, taking my photos.
Of course the photo could be better. I’m not so concerned with that fact. I am satisfied with the reference photo, and thankful for the luck of a cooperative bird in a beautiful place. Perhaps in the future, with more luck, better equipment, and new skills, I will capture a photo that will truly deliver the deserved respect to this stoic creature.