Three months before I captured this unusal shot, (which I could have only captured in the wild with the current equipment I own) here at Clove Lake, I saw this same bird, on a rock on the other side of this brook at the base of this same waterfall at Clove Lake. My friend Joyce from New Hampshire knew it was a Black crowned heron. It's nocturnal, which probably explains why I never saw it before. I read that they will feed during the daytime during the breeding season when they need extra energy for nesting. Someone more knowledgeable that I can tell me when their breeding season is, but regardless there he was, and I raced down the brook and hopped over the rocks then slowly walked up the brook in an attempt to get a shot of it with the waterfall as a nifty backdrop. But birds are impossible to sneak up on and it flew away as I got some fuzzy shots of it taking off from the rock. (Would have been great shots if they were sharp.)
Then this day I saw it again on the same side of the brook that I was on. I snapped off some shots right away and then VEEERY slowly worked my way down the slippery embankment, taking pictures every few feet. It obviously had become more tolerant of people since our last encounter, and I was able to get amazingly close before I dared not move any closer. How close?? I used my 55-200mm zoom and this shot WASN'T cropped. A small group of mosquito's had a field day with me as they seemed to know I couldn't lift a finger to stop them or the bird would have flown the coup. It was maddening but worth it. Thanks Joyce for the I.D.!!
summerClove Lakesbirdsheronsblack crowned night heronStaten Islandnaturesld2NYC