alert, oh, so alert now that the young buck has seen me
Mirrored against the still waters of the marsh stalked a subtly yet startling marked tricolored heron.
I had seen a few of these medium sized herons on other trips to Mattamuskeet Refuge
but they had all taken flight before I could take their measure with my camera.
This juvenile bird seemed oblivious to his surroundings and was very heron-like, fixed on the hunt.
Usually it is my feet that has startled the mourning dove.
It will burst out of the grasses, wings whirring distinctly –
flying far faster than I can adjust my camera, as they go from very near to me to very far within a wing beat.
This dove was startled not by me but my friend and I caught the bird as he flared for his landing.