Great Blue Heron Close-Up

great blue heron on the bear river migratory bird refuge

Yesterday, while contemplating starting a blog dedicated solely to the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge, I decided to take a drive on the refuge auto tour route. As my truck slowly made its way around the gravely refuge road I came across a great blue heron perched on a pile of reeds.

I fumbled for my camera but the heron stood perfectly still. It was at such a close distance I didn’t think I had any chance to get a photograph of it before it grew tired of me but the large heron patiently waited as I got my camera and carefully pointed it out the window.

There was only one problem. As I focused on the large bird I noticed the great blue heron was actually too close for my 150-600 mm lens. It’s not the usual problem bird photographers have to deal. Most commonly birds are too far out so one that is too close is a most unusual dilemma.

After unsuccessfully getting the whole bird in the view finder I opted to settle for a head shot of the large bird. They have such interesting head and beaks I thought it would be a nice opportunity to show up close the unique character of the great blue heron.

The clouds had rolled in by this time and the light was low so I had to bump up my ISO quite a bit and open up the aperture to get enough light to shoot hand held. The image isn’t print worthy because of these necessities but it is still a good enough image to share on the blogosphere about this interesting bird.

Great blue herons are common on the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge. In fact, they can be found most of the year on the refuge. I have seen them in the dead of winter when most of the refuge is covered in snow and ice, hovering over a small patch of open water patiently waiting for a unsuspecting fish to swim by.

If you have never encountered one of these beautiful birds in person, up close and personal like this, I suggest visiting the Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge auto tour route and look for them perched along the side of the gravel refuge road. They don’t always sit this close for observation but they quite often sit at a close proximity to the road where visitors can get a great view as well as a few pictures of fishing for their next meal.

Leave a Reply