Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Juvenile Green Heron

Green HeronGreen Heron, Fernhill Wetlends, Forest Grove, Oregon on 7 September 2009 by Greg Gillson.


It was a gloomy morning on Monday. Low clouds scraped the hills nearby. The vegetation at Fernhill Wetlands was dripping with water from recent rain. What else would you expect on a holiday in western Oregon?

There were several Green Herons around the ponds. They were mostly hidden by the tall grass at the pond's edge. They would fly out before I would see them on the shore. This young bird stayed out a bit in the "open" long enough for me to get off a couple of photos.

In the Pacific Northwest, Green Herons nest in small quiet ponds west of the Cascades and in the Klamath basin. They barely reach sw British Columbia. They are transients east of the Cascades.

They are tiny compared to the Great Blue Heron, just a bit over 1/3 of the size, in fact. They always stay hidden around the pond edge and don't stand out in the fields or spend much time on the open mudlfats like the Great Blue Heron.

Adults differ from this juvenile bird in that they are greenish-blue on the wings, with a chestnut-colored back and side of neck.