🌳🎭How do you like this move?🎭🌳
This Great Blue Heron had some serious moves. The setting sun caught the beautiful breeding plumage. Can you spot the female paying close attention to the stretch display? The info below is super interesting but I am not sure that is exactly what is going on in these photos as I only saw these birds for a few minutes. Swipe⬅️⬅️⬅️
🎭 Both male and female herons have grown their nuptial plumage, gracing the head, throat, and back, and they have undergone color changes of the legs, bill, and lores (bare skin between the bill and eyes). In the great blue the lores changes from blue to green, the legs and bill yellow to pink.
🎭 Having gained the attention of females, the male now stands at the nest site doing the Stretch display. Plumes bristling, he gives a call as his neck and bill reach the vertical position, legs flexing as the neck bends back; in some species, he snaps his bill at the display’s end. (Once a pair forms, an abbreviated Stretch becomes their Greeting Ceremony, employed each time one joins the other at the nest.)
🎭 The male may then present the female with a stick for the nest, a domestic gesture that symbolizes his acceptance of her as his mate. The female uses this stick to begin a new nest, or add to an old one. The nest, initially a flimsy platform, can become quite massive over the years. Even after creation of a pair bond, the displays of ritualized aggression continue, with the actual hostility progressively diminishing, just as the courting colors of the birds’ bare body parts fade while they settle into breeding behavior. Greeting one another with the abbreviated version of the Stretch, the pair will also Bow to each other and preen one another’s feathers. - baynature.org