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.