Great Blue Heron Nest Building
Spring is such a great time of year for bird watching. One of my most favorites to watch are the Great Blue Herons in Boulder County, Colorado. You can watch these birds for hours as they fly in and out of the nest to the ground grabbing sticks for their nest. An amazing sight to see like watching prehistoric animals in flight.
Here are some great Blue Heron Facts. Hope you enjoy these images and information.
The Great Blue Heron belongs to a large family that includes herons, egrets, and bitterns. This world-wide family has about 60 species. The Great White Heron of Florida is a local color variation of the Great Blue and belongs to the same species.
The Great Blue Heron’s long legs allow it to hunt in deeper water than most other herons and egrets.
Great Blue Herons lay from three to seven eggs, but the usual number is four.
The Great blue Heron has special neck vertebrae that allow the neck to curl into an “S” shape, and its structure allows a lightning-quick strike at prey. In flight the neck is folded back into the S-shape and the legs are stretched out behind them.
Great Blue Herons can hunt day and night thanks to a high percentage of rod-type photoreceptors in their eyes that improve their night vision
Great Blue Herons typically breed in colonies containing a few to several hundred pairs. Nest building begins when a male chooses a nesting territory and actively displays to attract a female. The large nest is usually built high up in a tree. The male gathers sticks for the female who constructs a platform nest lined with small twigs, bark strips, and conifer needles. The female lays 2-6 pale blue eggs, then both parents incubate them for 25-29 days (4 weeks) until the young hatch. The parents bring food to young at the nest for two months before the young can fly and continue feeding the birds for a few weeks after fledging the nest.