Spotted this Great Egret on the edge of a dike, actually almost on top of an old wooden trunk.
Directly below the bird is the edge of a salt marsh. It’s tidal so at low tide all types of edible critters are in the mud. The dike is a perfect place to look around below.
The Ocean is probably 15+ miles away but the tide still works this far inland.
That’s why this is called the Lowcountry, we are low…like sea level low.
A wide scene with a little bit of everything.
This includes the Roseate Spoonbills, Great Egrets, Godwits, and a few Snowy Egret.
Best viewed large.
Early morning, ACE Basin, South Carolina.
Taken as the bird flew over an old rice field.
ACE Basin, South Carolina.
I shot this trying to make the Great Egret stand out against the dark background. Not my usual swamp/marsh scene.
After looking at the shots I realized just how big the trunk and roots of this old Oak were.
Typical open-grown trees reach 20 meters (65.5 feet) in height, with a limb spread of nearly 27 meters (88.5 feet). Their lower limbs often sweep down towards the ground before curving up again.
These are slow growing trees but easily live several hundreds years,
Spanish Moss mostly grows on these trees also.
Recently I published several different articles with Night Herons at this same spot. They love to stand on the trunk and drop down to grab fish.
Appears the large Great Blues like the spot too.
These were ‘why not shots’. Towards the end of useful light and the Great Egret came zooming by.
The bird flew through never stopping until the trees in the far end.
I assume he was looking for a spot to spend the night.
If you enlarge any of the images you can see all the small ‘white dots’ in the air. Insects, some biting, out number all of us in swamps here.
Typical fall in a marsh.
Wrong lens, wrong angle, but too pretty to pass by.
The first photograph in this series is when the Great Blue spotted a Great Egret landing in what he considers to be his fishing territory
Great Blues are very protective of their territory.
He immediately moved over to the Egret.
As soon as he was close to the Egret he struck out. Enlarge the above image and you will see the Herons head between the Egrets wings, he missed but was close.
The Egret was smart to move on.
During nesting season these two will have monumental battles. Egrets are usually no match but at a nest site they are the more aggressive and can be deadly.
Both these birds are top of the food chain predators so this is normal behavior.