Bird Weekly – Photo Challenge – Birds beginning with a “H”

Welcome to Bird Weekly #53, Birds beginning with a “H” (if a bird has more than one word of the name, you can use it as long as it begins with a “H”, (ie: Hermit Thrush or Great Blue Heron) (7/2/21)

The feature image is a Great Blue Heron in flight.

I am sharing every Heron that is available to me in the Eastern part of the United States with some other “H” birds thrown in the mix.

Great Blue Heron

This Great Blue Heron was gathering materials to add to a large nest while there were 5 other adults keeping an eye on the eggs. All adults took turns retrieving new sticks and placing them in several nests. They are very social and protective during breeding season and a family of previous hatchlings sometimes stay close to the family. In this case, there were 8 total that helped each other protect nests that were across the creek.

Little Blue Heron

This is an adult Little Blue Heron mostly noted by the rich blue body and purple-maroon head and neck. The bill is two-toned. They eat small fish and amphibians and are found in shallow water, often in marshes and estuaries in the Southeastern part of the United States and islands in the Caribbean.

Tricolored Heron

I have a love-hate relationship with the Tricolored Heron. This bird is a bully to other wading birds, but they make up for it in their beauty and regalness. This is a pair of breeding adults (note the one in the back). They had a nest in this tree. Breeding adults have the blue bill whereas a non-breeding adult has a yellow bill.

Green Heron

Green Herons are widespread in the United States, parts of Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean and northern South America. The Green Heron is a short stocky bird (16-18 inches; 41-46 cm) with yellow legs and can be hard to spot because they blend so well in their environment.

Black-crowned Night-Heron

The Black-crowned Night-Heron is another stocky heron with yellow legs. A bit larger than the Green Heron, this bird is 22.8-26 inches (58-68 cm) in length. Their range is a bit more widespread than the Green Heron as well. They are world travelers and can be spotted in North America, Europe, Asia, Africa and South America.

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron

This immature Yellow-crowned Night-Heron perched up nicely in the wetlands around the Hillsborough River at Lettuce Lake Park in Tampa, Florida. Another stocky heron, the Yellow-crowned is about the same size as the Black-crowned but can be a little larger (22-28 inches; 55-70 cm). Juveniles and immatures take about 3 years to get their beautiful bold marked black and white head with a yellow crown.

Costa’s Hummingbird

This nest was in a tree in front of the Henderson Birding Preserve Visitor’s Center in 2016. The birding preserve is one of our hotspot when we visit Las Vegas. The Costa’s Hummingbirds are small as most hummers are. At adulthood, the male has a iridescent purple throat patch, while the female is more subdued with greenish head and back, white eyebrow stripe, grayish cheek, and a white chest and belly.

Great Horned Owl

The Great-horned Owl is a very distinguished predator with their tufted ears that look like horns. They are located in North and South America and are also known as the tiger owl which was originally known to early naturalists as the “winged tiger” or “tiger of the air”. The Great Horned Owl is more commonly known as the hoot owl. The adult measures 17-25 inches (43-64 cm) in length. Note in this photo the owlet in front of the sleeping Mama. There were actually two chicks in this nest and Papa owl was watching from a nearby tree.

Red-shouldered Hawk

The Red-shouldered Hawk is one of the most common hawks in the United States and Mexico. It’s range does not cover all the states, however but they do breed as far north as Canada. Males are 15-23 inches (38-58 cm) and the females are larger at 19-24 inches (47-61 cm).

Common Merganser

The Common Merganser is quite common throughout much of North America, Europe, Iceland and parts of Asia but not in the southern states of the U.S. We captured this one from the kayak at String Lake in Grand Teton National Park. They are 23-28 inches (78-97 cm) in length with the females like this one just a bit smaller.

Hooded Mergansers

This adult male Hooded Merganser was seen at Viera Wetlands in Viera, Florida during migration. Their range covers most of North America, but they can be seen in Iceland and some areas in Europe. They are the second smallest species of mergansers; only the Smew of Europe and Asia are smaller. It is the only merganser whose native habitat is restricted to North America. It is 15.8-19.3 inches (40-49 cm) in length.

Next time…Week #54 – Common birds in your area seen this time of year. (7/9/21)

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70 Comments on “Bird Weekly – Photo Challenge – Birds beginning with a “H”

  1. Pingback: Bird Weekly: “H” is for Hummingbird and Haliaeetus Lucocephalus – Second Wind Leisure Perspectives

      • I have never seen it work on owls but I love to play birdsong in the morning when I do my prayers. It really makes the birds sing. I have also discovered they love the sound of cellos.

        Liked by 1 person

      • That is so fun! cellos! I will be glad when I can get out and about again. I can hear the birds from outside even with the AC running. It is too hot and the mosquitoes are swarming. Plus with my foot, I can’t walk anywhere. I’m using a knee scooter and doing what I have to do to get around. LOL! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • Oh I am so sorry. I hope you will heal soon. I love the fall when I start feeding the birds again. I love to see who gathers around the feeders as the winter approaches.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks Joseph. It will be a while and I have to be patient. We start feeding our birds around December or January simple because of hurricane season and when it gets cold. Living in Florida, winter is short and varies, but at least in North Florida, we have some remanence of winter. My favorite time of year! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • It is one of the most exciting things about living in New England…watching the seasons change I mean. I love that each season is so defined and has its own personality and long enough to express itself. I am not a great fan of old man winter but I tolerate him because it is one of the best bird watching times…and there is all the seasonal winter food…and hot chocolate!

        Liked by 1 person

      • I agree with all of this. Fall, winter and early spring are the best times here. We get freeze warnings in north Florida but don’t deal with anything like you have. 😊

        Liked by 1 person

      • It has been interesting the last few winters. Last winter we did not get near enough snow, but the summer has made it up in rainfall.


  2. Pingback: Birds Beginning with H – Light Words

    • I do too. It isn’t always that way, but it is really special when you can witness it. In rookeries like the Alligator Farm in St. Augustine, egrets, herons, wood storks and spoonbills work together to keep predator away. It is amazing to see in person in March/April. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, I think even you might enjoy it. Plus, you can get acquainted with the alligators at a very safe distance. 🙂


      • LOL! No but a few hundred feet with fences and netting separating you. Maybe you will get up the courage to hold a baby one. hehehe! Sorry, couldn’t help myself. Even my kids have held a baby alligator when they were little kids at the zoo. Of course the chomper was taped shut and it wasn’t more than 18″ long from head to tail. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: BirdWeeklyPC-Birds-Beginning-with-H – WoollyMuses

    • These photos were from my archives. Unfortunately, I’m laid up for a few weeks after foot surgery. I’m sharing some photos I’ve never shared even if they are from long ago. Thank you for the wonderful compliment. 🙂


  4. Pingback: Black-Crowned Night Heron Preening – Nes Felicio Photography

  5. Pingback: HeavensSunshineCapturing the beauty of God's creation through the lens of a cameraWhere’s the Red Herring?

    • Thanks Leslie! How’s the book coming along? I’ve been away from the blog a lot due to foot surgery, business being steady and now I’m tutoring my granddaughter for the summer. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oh dear!! For surgery doesn’t sound like a fun way to spend the summer!

        I’ve finished my first draft snd am knee deep in revisions. Sometimes I think that’s the hardest part!

        Enjoy that grandkid!

        Liked by 1 person

      • yeah, no beach for me. I can look forward to the fall. LOL! My granddaughter isn’t here. We are tutoring over facetime. It is taking 2-3 hours a day out of my schedule. Blogging has become a thing of the past, at least until she starts school in a month. Plus I should be getting around better by then.
        I can’t wait to read the next installment. Keep up the great work and tedious revisions. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks Leslie and yay on the second book! One of these will hit and you will be off to the races. 🙂 A Texan-Floridian Nora Roberts. LOL!

        Liked by 1 person

  6. I love that first photo of a heron in flight. I always love it when a close flying heron comes between me and the sun. One day I’ll get a photo. I don’t think we get the little blue in our continent; it’s a beautiful bird. I also love that photo of the hawk taking off.

    I thought I’ll go with a hoopoe today (so surprising that they could be related to hornbills!).

    Upupa epops

    Liked by 1 person

    • Getting any bird in flight is special if you get a clear shot, the right light and they are close enough. I kinda ticked off the hawk. He was courting a female that was on the fence too. I thought I was far enough away, but I got between him and her at a distance. I used my 200mm lens and then cropped it in Photoshop. I wasn’t that close to him but he could hear the shutter. That did it! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Pingback: Gallery: a Grey Heron at Osterley Park ~ Travel with me

  8. Pingback: H is for bird – bushboys world

  9. Oh I didn’t realize you had foot surgery. I hope it’s healing well.
    I couldn’t resist wishing the RAYS luck today! GO JAYS!!!!!!!!!! 😊⚾⚾⚾

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Jen….sorry for the late response. I’m all over the place right now. The Rays got slapped around by the Jays a bit. We had a good series with the Indians though. They won their double header yesterday and the Lightning won the Stanley Cup last night. Woohoo! Tampa has had a good year in sports.
      Yeah, about my foot. I got my stitches out Tuesday. I can’t walk for 3-4 weeks still. I’m slow on the scooter. Plus I’m tutoring my granddaughter for another month and business is good. I don’t have time to blog or respond and I miss it! 🙂


  10. Pingback: Bird Weekly: Birds beginning with “H” | A Day In The Life

    • Thanks so much Tish! They are quite abundant here but once in a while you will have perfect lighting and all their glorious breeding colors coming through. 🙂


  11. Pingback: Bird Weekly Round-Up – Week #53 – Our Eyes Open

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