For the first time ever, I had a zoom lens in my possession. It was tricky to figure out where to use it on its virgin excursion. I considered Holy Hill because it’s the most beautiful time of year to take pictures there, but I’ve been there so often and it’s always overcrowded during the beautiful fall season. We explored some other options but ultimately landed on High Cliff State Park. It was worth the extra time in the car.
We almost skipped the Butterfly Pond, but at the last minute turned into the lot. We stopped at the first outlook and Jerry noticed a large bird. It took me too long to see what he was looking at but when I did, I immediately identified it as a Great Blue Heron. I was so excited to try out my new zoom lens!
I began snapping photos. This is one of the first I took.
It was shortly thereafter when another bird flew in and landed on the other side of the pond. When I took this picture, I had no idea there was a third heron on the left side of the island. You can see his head and beak sticking out from the left side of the island in this photo.
I was thrilled. Dare I say ecstatic? We took some more photos and continued along the path. Around the side of the path there was a small break in the brush and when we looked, we could see a bird’s head through the brush. You can see more than his head in the picture, but at the time that’s all we could see.
We kept walking the path and saw a bench. We took the footpath off the paved path and got very close to the pond. One of the herons flew by several times. We heard its majestic wings flapping in the air. It landed in a tree. It was hard to see with the naked eye, but I got a pretty good shot.
There were some ducks hanging out but we turned to face the other direction and saw one of the birds in the water. We were so close. We were so happy.
Pretty soon we could see she was looking for dinner.
It wasn’t long until another heron joined her on our side of the pond. I sneaked around to the other side of a tree and he was about ten feet away. I was in awe of this magnificent animal. What a beauty!
We hung out with these guys a little bit longer (okay, for quite some time) and had a great time while they posed for us.
We decided to finish the trail, but I got one last shot in.
When we got back to the beginning of the trail we saw the first heron was still in his original spot. We didn’t even notice the other one in the tree on the left until we looked at the photo.
We don’t know much about their behavior, but I feel they must be having some territory issues or protecting something. It was such a wonderful experience to spend this time with these lovely birds.