Jordan Lake Dam, Haw River: sometimes Mother Nature makes me heartedly laugh! This great blue heron appears to have special antennae just for locating fish. But joyful laugher aside, the plumes are there because it is the start of breeding season and he has put on his finery. The season is also why his chest plumes are so extravagant. The wind tossed those special feathers every which way. Those plumes almost caused the extinction of herons and egrets in this country: back when ladies wore elaborate hats and wanted those feathers to add to their perceived finery.