A Green Heron With Commentary

Monday, October 30, 2023,

This is a Green Heron that I was lucky enough to find at the Marine Nature Study Area in Oceanside. I spotted this bird almost as soon as I had arrived. Two of my friends were discussing cameras and settings when I came across them. I could tell by their animated pointing at dials and such. They were deep into their conversation when I spotted this guy. This sort of thing happens more often than you might think. We are, all of us, nature lovers, but we are also camera geeks. In fact, for over a year, one of these guys and I had a sort of grunting “Hello” relationship. Then, one day, we discovered that both of us use the same software for our photos. We became fast friends after that. True story.

So, anyways, Bob and Dan were engaged in conversation. When I managed to gain their attention, (some waving was involved), I whispered, “Green Heron”, while pointing out the bird in question. Dan, who hears better than Bob, did some translation for me, and moments later, we were all taking pics of the Green Heron. Unfortunately for all three of us, we were shooting against the sun. I don’t know what Bob and Dan got, but the pic above was the best of the shots I took at that moment.

About an hour later, I came across another Green Heron. It is quite possible that this was the very same Green Heron. It’s hard to say. As it turns out, birds have wings and can fly. Birders claim that they love that, but I’ve yet to meet the birder who hasn’t been frustrated by that very basic fact. For instance, how do these birders, who are huge on counting, know that their counts on any particular species are accurate? I mean, how do they know that a bird they saw at the beginning of their walk isn’t one they saw later on? I suspect there’s a great deal of guesswork involved.  🙂   JK



A Green Darner at Lido Beach

Wednesday, October 18, 2023,

This is a rather cool-looking dragonfly that I encountered at the Lido Beach Passive Nature Area. I had stopped there after visiting Nickerson Beach, which is practically across the street. Both locations offer a great deal to any intrepid nature lover, but the two places are quite different from each other. It’s amazing that these two fairly differing ecosystems are so close to each other. Perhaps, we’ll discuss those differences in a later post. This post is about this dragonfly.

I had travelled many of the paths at the Passive Nature Area. There’s a lot to see, including several differing habitats. I had seen numerous Herons, Ospreys, and at least two different types of butterflies. I was trekking back to my truck when I came across this beauty. Dragonflies can be somewhat skittish, so after getting the above shot, I carefully circled around for a different vantage point. I managed to work myself to its right without disturbing it. However, the first view was pretty much the same as the second, and I still didn’t know what it was. I mean, I knew it was a dragonfly, but I didn’t know what kind.

Luckily, I know people who know stuff. In almost every instance, if I come across as knowledgeable, it’s a safe bet that someone has coached me. Honest. In this case, it was my friend Michael Farina, who is a Conservationist at the Marine Nature Study Area. Mike is a great guy and really knows his stuff. I reached out to him, and he was able to identify this critter for me. It turns out that this way cool dragonfly is a Green Darner, possibly a juvenile male. How cool is that? I hike around with a camera, and my friends tell me what I’ve captured. Thanks, Mike!  JK