Wednesday, May 08, 2013

High Island Rookery

The rookery in Smith Oaks at High Island is always worth a visit during nesting season and we weren't disappointed when we stopped by there on Saturday.

As usual, visitors were captivated by the appearance and antics of the Roseate Spoonbills.

A few Spoonbills were grooming or sitting quietly on nests.

Others were still in the process of building nests.

Now and then two of the birds would get involved in a tussle that involved a lot of noisy fencing with their bills.

There were many Snowy Egrets, resplendent in full breeding plumage. It was easy to understand how they were almost exterminated 100 years ago to provide feathers for women's hats.

Most of the Snowy Egrets seemed to be flying and wandering around rather aimlessly but a few were clearly in breeding pairs.

For most visitors the stars of the show were the Great Egrets.

A few pairs were indulging in bonding behaviors.

While their plumage was generally not as spectacular as that of their Snowy cousins, several of them had visible young in their nests. So onlookers oohed and aahed as Great Egret parents fed their chicks, and as siblings competed for food.



Gustavia Tex said...

Great photos! I didnt see any of the Snowys nesting, but a lot of Cormorants on the far end of the island. The stick squabbles are fun to watch.

I went over on May 2nd and wrote it up on my blog.

Jeff said...

Thanks but they don't even begin to compare with yours. You must have some lens to get such sharp photos!