I'm an American Bittern. Can you see me?
How about now?
Now that I turned sideways?
How about when I'm eating a fish? Can you see me now?
American Bitterns (the subject of the photos above) are VERY secretive. They live in reeds and tall grassy areas in marshes and are notoriously difficult to see. Not this guy/gal. This bird was mingling with all of the other very tame animals at the Everglades National Park yesterday. Get ready for a flurry of posts about my trip there and the tame animals that I encountered. But for now, I thought that I would focus on just this species.
Notice in the first photo how difficult it was to spot the bird? (Bonzi, are you still having trouble?) That is due to the incredible camouflage plumage and the bird's defensive posture - which is to point it's bill skyward in order to blend into the grass. The second photo is zoomed in to see the bird better but it is still pretty hidden. The third photo shows the side view and still the bird blends into the background. I probably have 100 photos of this bird - none of which are cropped. The photos above are full frame. That is how close this bird was to the path where about 1,000 visitors walked past, oggled it, and photographed it. Alligators and other birds walked and swam past the bird and yet it just went about it's business. I was lucky enough to watch it catch a garr fish and try to eat it which is shown in the last photo. The fish ended up back in the water and gone after the Bittern dropped it.
Anyway, I guess you figured out that I'm in Florida. I'll be here for the next week and will be posting more. Stay tuned. . .