Jordan Lake. Follow up on the eel versus lamprey photos that I shared with you. The NC Wildlife Resources Commission is leaning somewhat more towards an American eel. The NC Museum of Natural Sciences scientists are more certain that it is an eel. Since none of us had the critter in hand it does leave open some questions but I wanted to share you what we knew at this point. Enjoy this video of the same great blue heron eating its eel taken with new camera!

great blue heron eating an American Eel

Jordan Dam, Haw River: How does a great blue heron go about swallowing a fish that is bigger than his own head and throat? Remembering that birds are living dinosaurs and therefore closely related to reptiles, I think the birds work at relaxing the muscles of their jaw and throat until they can work their way around the fish. You will see several pauses while this fledgling heron goes utterly still – I think that is when he is resting and allowing his muscles to stretch. That’s my take on the situation. He also occasionally dips the fish back into the water to keep it wet and maintain its slipperiness. The whole episode took more than 10 minutes … I have put up only the last part of the heron’s work. As to the trash, I wish people were more careful about the environment and took their trash out with them.