Reader Darryl Ernst sent us nothing less than a beautiful pas de deux (well, a kerfuffle) of Snowy Egrets. His notes are indented:
A few months ago my daughter, Brianna, was at Sebastian Inlet (a favorite destination of ours in Florida), when she just happened to be in the right place at the right time to catch an “argument” between a pair of Snowy Egrets (Egretta thula). One of the pair was minding its own business, sniping fish, when the other flew in with an attitude. It is impressive how big these relatively small egrets can make themselves look. I am not sure which one got chased away at the end. The egret that won spent some time afterwards fluffing (a technical term) and straightening out its feathers, and then got back to sniping fish.
And one extra. I think I’ve mentioned before the mated pair of Sandhill Cranes (Antigone canadensis) that have nested near us for years and raised several broods(?), typically two each year. Here is a picture from late November of Mom & Dad and their newest pair of children browsing through the reeds near their nesting site. Soon they will be ranging further afield. Even when the young’uns get older, the adults won’t allow me to get close to them but they allow my daughter to walk right along with them when they go foraging as if she were part of the group.