Waders, Shorebirds, Herons - DianaWhitingPhotography
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American Bittern_DSC1002

Still on my Peter Matthiessen reading kick, I am well into ‘The Wind Birds’ which is a detailed book about shorebirds. What I like about it is how he gives you some interesting seldom read facts about them that help identify and give understanding about their unique adaptations to their environment. While it has been pretty easy to see how the posture and subtle coloring of the American Bittern helps camouflage the bird among the reeds it favors, he has pointed out another reason for their posturing. Their eyes are situated to favor looking down, presumably for hunting, and I can see it in the contour of their eye socket on their head. If the bird wants to see what is in front of it, it needs to raise its neck to see forward. Amazing really, when you think about it.

'AmericanBittern'DSC1002