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Fitness and Photography for Fun - A blog on staying fit by hiking and doing photography by David Mendosa

A Black-crowned Night Heron

July 29th, 2011 · 4 Comments

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For the first time in the more than five years that I have lived at Tantra Lake a Black-crowned Night Heron has visited here this month. I saw this distinctive bird here for the first time four weeks ago. One morning I looked out my living room window and there it was hunting for fish at the lakeshore just in front of my living room window.

I got better shots of a night heron that morning than ever before. Earlier, I had seen one in the North Park area of Colorado and another at Ruby Lake in Nevada, but the birds there were too shy and I never got a photo that pleased me.

In fact, when I first saw it here, I thought that I might have scared it away, because as I approached it that morning, the bird flew off and away from the lake. Not until almost two weeks later did it return for a day. Then, I found it resting in one of the trees between my apartment and the lake.

Yesterday the night heron returned for the third time. I would have missed it, however, because I had taken my morning walk earlier and was comfortably relaxed on my easy chair sipping a cup of Assam tea and reading The New York Times.

But then came a knock on my door interrupting my relaxation. It was Michael, one of the maintenance men at this apartment complex. He has been a friend of mine here for years and stops to chat with me often when I am out searching for birds and other beauty.

He had come to tell me that a woman was sitting on the grass between the clubhouse and the stream that feeds the lake. She was watching the night heron.

Thinking that the bird could fly away at any moment, Michael even offered to take me on the golf cart that he uses to get around the property. The trip got me there at least two minutes quicker.

In the event I sat on the grass watching the night heron for almost an hour. In that time I got so many shots of it that I filled my camera’s 8GB CF card.

I started by using my 300mm prime lens with my 1.4x teleconverter. But as I carefully scooted forward I got so close that I needed to remove the teleconverter. Later, when I looked at all the shots on my computer, I was pleased in either case with their sharpness.

A Black-crowned Night Heron

A Black-crowned Night Heron

Click on the picture above to enlarge
The Night Heron Hunts

The Night Heron Hunts

Click on the picture above to enlarge

Never before had I got anywhere near as sharp a shot of a night heron before. So I stayed and stayed, hoping that I would catch it catching a fish. We did!



Click on the picture above to enlarge

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Posted in: Photography

4 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Diana Gentile // Sep 1, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    Hi David! Great photos!! Love nature also!
    Thank you for sharing! Hope you will continue
    to post all of your beautiful photos!! I live in Traverse City MI very beautiful!!

  • 2 Dan Hunter // Sep 2, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    Hi David, I love your pictures of things natural almost as much as I love your monthly articles. Keep up the good work!

  • 3 tony silva // Sep 5, 2011 at 11:12 am

    Im diabetic also, and I enjoy your advice, recently I have felt some chest pain and little burning sensations in my chest, this worries me,is it due to the diabetis? this is only last for seconds, what do you think,tony

  • 4 David Mendosa // Sep 5, 2011 at 11:25 am

    Dear Tony,

    That pain and burning sensation is probably not directly related to diabetes. But it could be a heart problem, which diabetes makes worse. You absolutely need to see a doctor or go to a hospital as soon as possible.