Continuing the celebration of commonplace birds we now hail the ubiquitous Great Blue Heron. There are too many images to share so I’ll keep the captions brief and let the pictures do the squawking, er, I mean talking.

Their beautiful blue-gray can really pop in the right light.

They share our world without too much complaint, adapting to our cities and towns when they can.

They mimic our styles of dress and mock us through forced perspective.

They are good watchers. They know the rhythms of gophers. They know the rhythms of traffic.

We have at least 3 nesting locations here in San Francisco and that number seems to be climbing slowly.

Males can get into a dance battle if territories are threatened. This strutting display was a delightful surprise to see.

As I’ve posted before they are efficient and merciless hunters.

They are aided by excellent binocular vision that lines up with their dagger-like bill.

This one was so good it caught two fish at a time (just once though).

They do like to supplement their diet with small mammals, reptiles, amphibians, insects. They are true generalists. And they cough up pellets just like hawks and owls!

Those sharp eyes also keep watch for predators…

and nosey photographers.

Goodnight Heron. Apologies for the photographic onslaught but, as you can see, Great Blue Herons provide plenty of fodder for anyone interested in finding the sublime in the everyday.

Written by Walter
Walter Kitundu is an artist and designer, instrument builder and bird photographer. As an artist he has created hand built record players powered by the wind and rain, fire and earthquakes, birds, light, and the force of ocean waves. Walter has performed and been in residence at art centers and science museums internationally. He has performed with the renowned Kronos Quartet, bassist Meshell Ndegeocello, the electronic music duo Matmos, and the legendary Marshall Allen - in venues from Carnegie Hall to a high school library in Egilstaadir, Iceland. In 2008 Walter became a MacArthur Fellow. Walter loves photographing birds and is an ongoing volunteer with the Golden Gate Raptor Observatory. He was hooked when a Red-tailed Hawk landed at his side, ate a caterpillar, then refused to leave. He is a Senior Design Developer for the Studio Gallery at the Exploratorium in San Francisco where he designs and builds environments for learning. You can see more of his work on his blog, Bird Light Wind.