Monday, April 6, 2009


Today, I confess, with some embarrassment, to visiting the heronry at Stanley Park twice.  I stopped on the way to school and I stopped again on the way home.  I choose to believe it is Stanley with a new mate in these next two pictures.  I can't name his mate Sue, as in Stanley and Sue of last season, because they were siblings.  Maybe he got together with Sydney, but "Stanley and Sydney" sounds like two males, so I guess I'm looking for a female name to go with Stanley.  Stanley was extremely affectionate and supportive of his mate.  They worked together on their nest this morning, and each time Stanley left and returned, they seemed to caress each other.      

I took one flower picture on the way to school.
When I returned to the heronry after school, I met Dalyce.  She has been observing the herons seriously for several years now.  She works closely with Vancouver Parks Board to monitor the nests, and she was the one who first told me about the heronry three years ago.  We talked about how difficult it is for young herons to build their first nest.  They are on their own, since the parents have nothing more to do with them, once they fledge. There is nobody to teach them, and it's very much a trial and error process. We watched this pair together.  Dalyce said they are just starting a nest, and it is quite the challenge to manipulate the twigs.  Sometimes they drop them, and sometimes, they just don't know where to put them.  It's hard to tell there is any nest in this picture.  Dalyce kept saying to the heron, "Just a little to your left."  To be honest, I think I see a small clump that could become a nest, but I'm not absolutely sure.  Dalyce, if you read this, is it just above the lower heron's head?

Dalyce also pointed out this titmouse's nest.  I have never seen one before, so I looked it up, and found a blog entry in 2006, when Julie Zickefusse rescued one with a broken wing.  There are several good pictures, and a great one showing the two wings working.  Below is a picture of the nest in Stanley Park.
Here are two other herons working away on their nest.
The last two pictures are "just because" ones, both taken this evening.  


  1. Wonderful pics of Stanley and his new mate - makes me think of a couple standing on the foundation of their soon-to-be-constructed house, discussing the details. I can almost hear Stanley saying "I think we should enlarge the bedroom a bit - it could be triplets, y'know."

    As for the name of his new mate, what about Stanley and Shania? Shania means beautiful, which she is. Or, Stanley and Serena? Stanley and Sheila?

  2. I vote for Stanley and Stella! (I'm big on alliteration, remember?)
    Beautiful shots of all the herons. What camera and lens do you use? (If you've mentioned it before, I've forgotten. Memory is the second thing to go....and I've forgotten the first!)

  3. Oh you are funny, at the same time excellent post, and you are very lucky to photograph them. I started birding in 2006-07, and you know this is such a refreshing and rewarding hobby, and so much to learn. Thanks for sharing. Anna :)

  4. Thanks, Jean. I love the thought of them discussing construction details. And thanks for suggesting names. I like Serena. It just occurs to me now, that the pair of herons on the afternoon sun side could be Sam and Serena.

    Thanks, EvenSong, I think Stanley and Stella has a good ring to it. I use a Panasonic Lumix - DMC-FZ18, and I use the AutoIntelligent function. In other words, point and click and trust the camera to do the thinking for me. One day, I hope to up my skills, but for now, it keeps me happy.

    Yes, Anna, I am lucky. No question about it. And, it is great fun to have readers who are interested in sharing my days!