Dressed in little and wishing I could take that off, the summer sun baked the shore and me with it. Nevertheless, I held my ground in defiant agony. I had arrived to watch the wildlife, and watching the wildlife was precisely what I intended to do.
As I melted on the pier with no available cover, I noticed a great egret (Ardea alba) roaming about in the shallows in search of lunch. The distance between us prevented me from capturing a better video than the one included here, but I still believe you can get the feel of the moment.
The white egret successfully captures a fish and swallows it down, and then it takes a quick drink of water to ensure the fishy has something to swim in while being digested. Or at least that’s what I thought.
What I did not take note of until after that drink was that a great blue heron (Ardea herodias) was standing mere feet away from the egret, watching silently, perhaps even jealously for the meal one enjoyed and the other did not. Only after the egret began moving away did the heron start milling around as if it had only just remembered why it was standing there in the water.
But it didn’t stop there. Even as I pondered whether to stop the video and leave the edge of the pier where sunlight reflected into my face from the surface of the lake, I heard the sound of quacking nearby that seemed to be growing closer and closer. At the end of the video, you’ll see the duck drive-by performed by the unidentifiable threesome I spoke of previously. There are two white females and the one dark male, none of whom seem willing to provide their taxonomic credentials. Perhaps another time…
[Update] I have since identified the white duck as a pekin duck (a.k.a. domestic duck, white pekin duck, or Long Island duck; Anas domesticus).