The town I live in used to be mostly farms and cow pastures. This is rapidly changing, and for that I am sorry. I like cow pastures! Well, across the highway from where I live they have plowed under yet another pasture to cram a bunch of houses in. You can now see very clearly to the river – which, you probably could have before, but maybe the ranch house blocked this particular view, I don’t know – but anyway, there are all these big dark spots way up in the trees lining the river. Cottonwood trees. Well, the other day in our little local paper, it said those were nests of the Great Blue Heron. So I had to go check it out! We have quite a few heron in our area, and if you would have asked me, I would have told you they nested on the ground somewhere, like the ducks and geese tend to do. Obviously not because it would have been an informed observation, just my (ignorant) opinion! I would also have thought they nested in solitary places, because when you see a heron out fishing, they are always alone. And yet, here they were, nesting high up in the tree tops, nest after nest after nest! It was very cool to see. I wonder how the new subdivision is going to mess this up…. will the birds leave? They are very sensitive birds who don’t let you get too close. The developers are supposedly putting in a "conservation easement", but I wonder if that will be enough? I feel bad about how we are crowding out the wildlife. I pass developments where just last year I used to watch foxes hunt for mice…it’s sad, I think. But here I am, living in ‘their’ space… it’s not like I am innocent of it.
Be sure to check out my photo album of the Heron Rookery!