Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Night Herons @ Blackie Lake

There are (to my mind) remarkable numbers of Nankeen night heron at Blackburn Lake currently. It has prompted me to examine the Eremaea sightings for this species which reveals that they are not sighted for much of the year and most likely seen from late spring through summer.

Nankeen night heron (immature)
Blackburn Lake, 16 September 2011

Nankeen night heron at Blackburn Lake
Graph generated by Eremaea website

I have always found them a bird that is not readily seen even when they are present. Even when trying hard (for me) I would generally only pick up one or two. Lately however there have been days on the water's edge when it feels like they are the dominant species with much posturing and flying around. An Eremaea list from 15 November 2011 from Richard and Margaret Alcorn records no fewer than 12 sightings.

The photo below is taken on a day when I sighted seven night heron, four of which are in shot:

Night heron at Blackburn Lake
18 November 2011
Spring is certainly a lively time at Blackburn Lake for birding (more images from 18 November):

Little pied cormorant

Pacific black duck

Little black cormorant

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