Bird Weekly – Photo Challenge – Long legged Birds

Limpkin with a snail in the beak.

Welcome to Week #23 of the Bird Weekly Photo Challenge. Week #23 challenge gives way to Long Legged Birds.

The feature image is a Limpkin caught with a snail in its beak. Supposedly, the Limpkin got its name from early European settlers to North America as they described the gait of this bird to look like it had a limp.

Long-legged birds tend to have a pronounced strut when they walk. Long legs are something I know nothing about since I’m only 5′ 1″ tall. I related much better to the short-legged bird challenge.

Wood Stork

The Wood Stork is a large white bird that stands just over 3 feet tall. In flight, it soars on thermals while the neck and long legs are outstretched. These birds are revered in Greek, Chinese and European mythologies as good luck and sign of spring and births. Popularized by Hans Christian Andersen’s fable “The Storks” written in the nineteenth century featuring the White Stork of Europe, the stork became synonymous being the delivery vessel of new babies.

Great Blue Heron

The Great Blue Heron, aka GBH if you are keeping a tally of how many of them you see in a day while out birding is a large heron who hunts both day and night because of rod-type photoreceptors in their eyes that improve their night vision.

Tricolored Heron

The Tricolored Heron can be a little eradick when feeding. They are not as patient as the Great Blue Heron who is slow and methodical when searching for food. The Tricolored can be seen eating alone, but will sometimes follow behind Cormorants and Grebes snapping up fish they may stir up.

Little Blue Heron

Little Blue Herons are white as juveniles. As they turn in their first year, you will see them all patchy and not very attractive. Once they get their adult color in, the slate blue body and purple head & neck standing on their greenish legs set them apart from other herons. Along their middle tow is a built-in row of “teeth” that serves a grooming tool.

White Ibis

White Ibises nest in colonies in trees & shrubs along the water’s edge and they change their location nearly every year. They spend a great deal of time walking through wetlands for food, however they are known to hang out in the urban parks and lawns, especially in Florida. I saw about 50 of them 2 streets over yesterday poking around a neighbors yard. I suspect they will come do some housekeeping in my yard within the week. They are making their rounds, teaching their young how to feed. It was a mix of adults and juveniles. I didn’t have my camera of course because I was coming back from the post office. It was raining and I didn’t feel like going back.

Glossy Ibis/White-faced Ibis

The White-faced Ibis is uncommon in Florida, however they show up occasionally. More common is the Glossy Ibis. When we log this bird on, they are listed as Glossy Ibis/White-faced. It is considered a western replacement of the the Glossy Ibis. They can only be distinguished by the white around the eyes and the legs are little different in color.

Cattle Egret

The Cattle Egret can be found in fields where they hop up on the backs of grazing cattle to pick off ticks benefitting both the bird and the cow. The Cattle Egret is originally from Africa but found its way to North America in 1953 where it bred and spread. During breeding season, it has yellow plumes on its head. The one captured in the photo is non-breeding. It was near a saltmarsh but there were cattle in a pasture down the dirt road not far away.

Snowy Egret

Distinguished by its black legs and yellow feet, the Snowy Egret’s feet play a large roll in stirring up small aquatic animals when they forage. I captured this one in the rain while driving on Black Point Drive Loop, an eleven mile nature drive at Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge near Titusville, Florida.

American Avocet

American Avocets can be found on their long slender legs in shallow wetlands where they forage in shallow water with little vegetation. They nest in areas that have very little vegetation as well. Odd to think because they stick out like a sore thumb. They are elegant in looks and when they walk, have a grace about them. This pair was found at Henderson Birding Preserve in Henderson, NV not far from Las Vegas.

Lesser Yellowlegs

The Lesser Yellowlegs is rebounding from hunting in the 20th century but has declined again from losses of wetland habitats. It is on the Yellow Watch List along with other birds in this post and past posts. Wildlife refuges like the St. Marks Wildlife Refuge near Tallahassee, Florida has provided the habitat for them to make a come back.

Interesting fact: Even though the Lesser Yellowlegs and Greater Yellowlegs are similar in appearance, they are not each other’s closest relative. The Lesser Yellowlegs is more related to the Willet.

Black-necked Stilt

Black-necked Stilt in search of food. Don't blind yourself looking at their pink legs.

With their rosy pink legs, the Black-necked Stilt is an elegant shorebird with it’s black and white plumage. They have the second longest legs in proportion to their bodies of any bird. The top spot for longest legs to body ratio goes to the flamingos. Black-necked Stilts participate in what is called a “popcorn display” which involves a group of them gathering around a predator and jumping, hopping or flapping their wings to drive it away from the nests. The Black-neck Stilt is related to the American Avocet and are capable of hybridizing and producing young, although it is rare.

Upcoming challenges can be found on my Bird Weekly Challenge Page.

Until next week…Week #24 – Birds hunted or consumed

70 Comments on “Bird Weekly – Photo Challenge – Long legged Birds

  1. Pingback: Long Legs – One Woman's Quest II

    • Thanks Willow! How are you doing? I’m crazy busy right now with orders. GOOD THING, but is keeping me from visiting the blogs. I’m still working on SLS from last Sunday. 🙂


  2. Great shots, Lisa. It is amazing that birds can have such long and flexible necks. I hadn’t really thought about it before. Now I see the long necks are mostly wading birds, which makes perfect sense.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: BirdWeeklyPC-Long-Legged-Birds – WoollyMuses

  4. Lisa, we saw “Little Blue Herons” on Chincoteague Island (VA) last year – they look like something in a scary movie! A deep blue, almost black. Your pics are amazing! The other day we saw several Blue Herons on the James River. They are always so regally beautiful. Birdie blessings to you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think I sometimes take our birds for granted. I feel like they are common everywhere when really they may not be. The Little Blues are really animated. But the one bird I didn’t include this time is the Reddish Egret…talk about animated. 🙂


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  6. These are all so gorgeous, Lisa! I’m hosting a color challenge this week, so I don’t have any auburn-colored long-legged birds. But, you’ve got me motivated to capture more birds with my lens while I am in San Diego this week! BTW, your beautiful stork has a hint of auburn in his legs 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Is that a hint? I think I can pull some auburn things out. I haven’t had a chance to do weathered and my not. I’ve been getting more orders and been busy! I’ve sold more address stamps in the past 2 days than in the last 3 months. I sold and made 12 phone wallets today that shipped to Italy. I’m an international success. Bahahaha! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • I took a good part of the day off to clean my house, give Heaven a bath and enjoy the masked company of my sister-in-law and daughter. They came over for a nice big lunch. We kept our masks on in my house until we ate. It was good to have company. Just finished my proofs of the orders that came in. It’s getting busier and I have several repeat customers. It’s good! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Pingback: Bird Weekly – Photo Challenge – Long legged birds | nowathome

  8. Pingback: American Avocet – Musin' With Susan

  9. Pingback: White Faced Heron – AT PATHO

    • Something went wrong with the link. I clicked on it and it says, “oops something went wrong”. Can you check that and I will go take a look? 🙂


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  17. Well, I realize I never “liked” and commented on your post! But I found the challenge on someone’s blog. I sure love your birds, I wish we had more here. They are building a new “preserve” only 3 miles from my home. I can’t wait until it is done. It used to have overflow from the wash (when it rained). They had birds there, so hopefully some cool birds will return when they bring back water.
    My favorite above is: American Avocets 😊💜

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Lisa! Have you made it to my Bird Weekly Page? It shows upcoming topics. You can use archives. I certainly do all the time. I’ve been sitting on thousands of photos for years and never did anything with them until the blog. New preserve sounds fantastic. Where abouts do you live? It’s okay if you don’t want to share that info. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • We live in Arizona, not a lot of water around. But it is around if you know where to look! 😊 And I need to take a look at upcoming topics. I usually just happen upon the challenges!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Arizona has so many birds since it is in a main migration route. I want to get out there to see the condors. We were in Phoenix & Sedona in 2005 but we were not birders back then. We will eventually get back out there. 😊

        Liked by 1 person

      • Yes I know. Same as going to Vegas. We usually go in March or early April. Migration season & temps are perfect. Hopefully in a couple of years when Covid is under control. 😊

        Liked by 1 person

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