06 June 2006

Tame birds of Florida


Around here in Maryland, the Great Blue Herons are normally very difficult to approach to; if I can get within about 25 m of one with a telephoto lens on my camera, I consider myself lucky. Down in Florida, however, they and other large water birds seem to be unusually tame. I noted this in a post last summer about a hiking trip I had taken in the J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge on Sanibel Island.


Last weekend in Tampa area, I was amazed again how close I could get to the herons and egrets. This Great Blue Heron was at a beach parking lot. I walked within about 3 m of it without disturbing it. When you are that close to such a large bird, a 50-mm lens, which is what I used, is more than enough.


This Great Egret posing with my son next to our rental car was at another spot. I don't know what makes the birds of Florida tamer and whether that is better or worse for the birds. The residents seem to ignore the birds; only the tourists like me go after them with a camera. Most of the areas where I have encountered such "tame" birds are places that seem to have been developed recently. Perhaps, the birds haven't yet learned to fear humans.


Katie said...

Yes, they are beautiful birds. Lovely pics as well. Great that you got them so close!

Clare said...

Brilliant pics - there's so much detail - I hadn't realised before how herons wear their wings in such an -off-the-shoulder fashion.