Saturday, February 18, 2012

More Scenes and Birds from the Canal

The entry to the drainage canal from the sea is broad and flanked by low growing red mangroves.


Farther up the canal where the water is fresh rather than brackish, there are steep banks.
On the right bank, you can see ferns cascading down toward the water.  In my previous post, I had a photo of the ferns.  
Mixed in among the ferns were beautiful Lycopodium, also called club moss.
On the left bank, where the soil is bare, there was a spotted sandpiper scrambling along.




















It didn't fly off as I floated by in the kayak, letting me take some photos as I went.



It bobbles its tail up and down as it goes.
After reaching the end of the canal, I turned around and went slowly downstream toward the sea, eventually reaching the mangroves.  In a protected sort of bay surrounded by mangroves, there a number of herons and egrets.  
The light was terrible for photography, and it didn't help that the birds were far away and against the grey sky.
Never-the-less, the shots were good enough to ID this bird as an adult Little Blue Heron.


I was able to do a bit better with this individual that was considerably closer and cooperated nicely with the camera.
Its colors are quite subtle with some pale blues and pinks along the base of the bill.


The legs are greenish yellow and eyes are yellow.
It turns out this is a juvenile Little Blue Heron before it begins its color change from white to blue.






























A lovely bird; one of the exceptions in which the juvenile is more striking than the adult.
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8 comments:

  1. The juvenile Little Blue Heron really is a beauty, and you got some great shots again. A lovely way to explore the canal, from your kayak.

    Interesting to see the Spotted Sandpiper. I found one at my local lake last year; a very rare visitor to our shores, and it was in breeding plumage too. Caused a lot of excitement amongst the local birders.

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    1. The spotted sandpipers are pretty common in parts of Belize. But it was still a treat to get so close to it.

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  2. Lovely images of the canal, almost like being there! Spotted Sandpiper! That would have the birders chasing about if one turned up here, which they do on rare occassions.

    PS Re the Peregrines on my patch, once the work on tower, that is there home, is complete, I'm hoping for them to return - fingers crossed!

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    1. Thanks, Warren. I hope you peregrines return too.

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  3. Nice series of images despite the light.

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    1. Thanks, Anthony. I was surprised that the juvenile little blue showed up as well as it did.

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  4. Happy Birthday....xx I hope you have had a wonderful day.

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    1. Thank you, Andrew. It has been a lovely day. Hope you enjoyed yours as well.

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