Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The shy heron

It takes a person with very sharp eyes to pick out the bird that is hidden among the lotus leaves. This very quiet bird is a rather large bird that stands at 90 cm, yet if it doesn't move no one will know it is there.
The Purple Heron is a resident wading bird but it can also be found across parts of Africa, Europe and Asia.Even though it has colourful plumage, the colors actually provides excellent camouflage among the water plants.
It is a shy and solitary hunter that prefers to stand and wait motionlessly in shallow water for its prey. Another interesting thing about the Purple Heron is its long snake-like neck which is usually held in a prominent kink (can be seen even with the neck extended out).
This heron prefers to feed in freshwater wetlands and are said to be less tolerant to human activity. This bird has been feeding in an artificial habitat and seems to be able to tolerate having people around it. On several occasions that I've seen it, it will even stand out in the open to sun itself.