Monday, May 4, 2009

American Bittern!

Another amazing weekend with plenty of firsts, but I am savoring these posts and spreading them out over the next few days. First off, I am starting with the American Bittern. I have only seen one once, last year, as it flew away, but I did get some dark shots. This time was quite different...and quite dramatic!

There were a total of three of us as were walking along the trail to a rumored bittern location. As we are approaching the pond, we hear the distinctive "boom" of the bittern. "Pam" sees what might be the head sticking up above the tall grasses, and takes a second look thru her lens. It is! After excited whispers as to what to do, the bittern flies off and lands on the trail at the far side. Ooooh! We trek the trail at a leisurely pace and stop along the way for closer shots. The bittern starts working the reeds and is not quite keeping our pace so we push on...

We sat on a bench for quite some time, letting it relax in it's environment as we excitedly ponder our good fortune.

We continue our path as it gets quite a distance from us, and rediscover it's location on the other side of the pond. It started "booming" right in front of us!

There isn't a cooler sound than that of the American Bittern!

Another sound that added to the mix, was that of the Pied-billed Grebe. If you haven't ever heard their unique courting call, google it! It's worth the effort!

For a Bittern to let us into it's life was such a lucky moment. Wow! I still can't describe how amazing it was!


jalynn01 said...

Love your Bittern!! I haven't been lucky enough to see this bird yet. I see you posted a lot of warblers while I was in WV birding. How wonderful and exciting your photographs are. This time of year is just a mecca for these migrating birds. Love your beautiful Prothonotary Warbler. What the reflection in the water as if he's talking to himself and saying: Am I not a beauty?

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

WOW!Your pictures are fantastic,but I can only imagine the thrill of being right there.

Bird Girl said...

I have never seen a bittern! But I am really dying to - what a boom they do have (at least on the ipod ;-)
Great post and pictures!

denapple said...

Bitterns are on my all-time Wish List. Congrats on a great find.

Nick S said...

Some classic poses there from the old Bittern :-)