Saturday, May 17, 2014

Bittern and Porcupine

A Porcupine warily eyes your blogger. I'm up in beautiful Presque Isle County, Michigan, and these prickly beasts are quite common here. I encountered the animal in the photo on my first night, as it foraged along a roadway. Naturally I stopped, and made a stealthy approach. The porkie let me come quite close before scuttling off to the shelter of a nearby aspen grove.

An American Bittern in its breeding finery, puffed and showing off for the ladies. Note his fanned shoulder epaulets and fringed throat ruff. The bird was doing its watery oonk-ah choonk calls repeatedly only 15-20 feet from our group this afternoon. It was quite a spectacle and I managed a pretty good video of the bird calling, which is something to see. I'll try and post that later.

Bitterns, like the Porcupine, are common here but one doesn't often see these secretive herons like we did today. We've had scores of other interesting birds, with much more to come.

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1 comment:

Sue said...

Love the porkie. I know I have one at my place--they love to strip the bark from trees. I have several trees just outside my windows that have slowly been "de-barked"--yet I've never been able to see him at work......