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Lucky or well prepared?

May 12, 2012
By GARRY BRANDENBURG , Times-Republican

GREAT BLUE HERONS (Ardea herodias) are those long legged, long necked, long billed birds that one may see standing in shallow waters of any stream, river, pond or lake. They are patient. Standing motionless in shallow water, they are observers of anything overhead, above the surface or even below the surface of the water. They wait for small fish to swim by and if the fish is close enough, its long "S" shaped neck uncoils and the beak stabs into the water to capture the fish. After a quick flip to get the fish in the beak headfirst, the process to gulp the fish into its throat begins. Pretty soon, if one is lucky, you will observe a lump (the fish) slide down the long neck of the bird.



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